Family picking up pieces after losing almost everything in flood - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

7/19/10

Family picking up pieces after losing almost everything in flood

TAHOKA, TX (KCBD) -

By Tiffany Pelt - email

LYNN COUNTY, TX (KCBD) - A Lynn County family is still picking up the pieces after losing almost everything in the Fourth of July floods.

"We didn't even get to do fireworks. We had enough of our own I think," Kristi Kizer said. Kristi along with her husband Aaron and three children are now staying in a horse trailer, after their home was flooded that Sunday.

Even though the water has receded, the frightful memories of that night are still very present. "We were able to just pick the kids up and put them in the car. We were dragging the car out of here with the tractor because we couldn't even drive it was so wet," she said.

After getting her children out and making sure the animals were taken care of, Kristi tried to save the things that meant the most. "I'm like what do I need, what do I need and your tired and your adrenaline is going and I thought I can't replace my baby pictures," Kizer said. Quickly putting her albums high on shelves before getting out, those items were some of the only things saved.

Just hours after leaving the flooding became so bad the house began to lift off the ground almost floating away. "Thankfully the dam finally gave way and we didn't lose the house completely although now we've realized we've essentially lost everything inside of it due to the mold," she said.

All that's left of the dam is a gaping hole about a hundred feet deep and a hundred feet across. The lake behind their house is left bare and completely empty with deep canyons running through where the water washed away the ground.  "When the dam broke all the water went into Lake Allan Henry. This is the head waters of the Brazos River and so it changed the entire structure of the river for the next two ranches over," said Kizer.

To rebuild the dam estimates are between $300,000 and $500,000 and the value of their property, 1300 acres, has been cut by more than half.

The damage doesn't stop there. Besides losing their home and most of their belongings, they also lost their motor home and miles and miles of fence. It will take them at least a year to fix all the damage and could cost them hundreds of thousands of dollars. "How do I even start, where do I start and so even in your sleep your thinking you're planning your praying you're like what do we do and I feel like I haven't even slept in the two weeks this has happened, and I relive it in my mind while I sleep," said Kizer.

The family does find some relief in knowing the new home they've already started building on the property might be salvageable. It's only in the frame stage of construction and they're hoping mold and water damage won't prevent further construction.    

Through all the tears and pain, the Kizers are staying positive and are thankful for all the community support. "Every tree was covered in debris, and people just came out and loaded it in their pickups and hauled to the burn pile just to help.  It's been incredible to see people try to help," said Kizer.

Copyright 2010 KCBD. All rights reserved.

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