Arizona group helps rebuild Owego
Six months have passed but the signs of devastation caused by September's flood are still visible in the Village of Owego. As our Bill Mich tells us, a group of volunteers have made their way across the country to do their part in rebuilding the village.
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OWEGO, N.Y. -- They are the sounds that have been ringing through the streets of Owego since September. And there is still no end in sight for a full recovery from the flood.
"We met with the mayor and one of the community organizers and they just showed us pictures and we drove around town. You can see the trash, that they're still cleaning out houses. It's amazing," said Jorge Cuellar of the University of Arizona.
The small group of five students who took the tour of the village is in the area on their spring break from Arizona. Rather than soak up the sun on a beach, they decided to lay some bathroom tiles, put up some dry wall, and make a difference in someone's life.
"The woman, Ellen, who lives here, wasn't even planning on coming back. She was so distraught by everything that happened, and so it is exciting to help someone who maybe wasn't even going to return to the town that she loves, be able to come back in," said group leader, Ryan Miller.
The Damascus Road Tuscon campus church group makes a volunteer trip once a year. Previous stops have included Haiti and New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina. Now in Owego, the goal is by the time the group has to leave on Thursday, this home will be as close to livable as possible so it's owner can have a normal life once again.
"We just want to make God's love tangible to people, let them know that the country hasn't forgotten about them and Jesus loves them. And this is one way we do that, through tangible service," said Miller.
About 90% of homes and businesses in Owego were damaged by the flood. And while the group may only be here for a few days, in the long road to recovery, every little bit helps.