Sherman family returns home 9 months after floods

By: Daniel Gotera Email
By: Daniel Gotera Email

SHERMAN, Tex. -- Last summer, flood waters destroyed dozens of houses in Sherman. Now nine months later, officials say many of those victims are still waiting to get back into their homes.

For most of us, the sight of flood waters washing away homes is now a memory. But the people who live Contemporary Street in Sherman relive those memories every day, and for one family, being able to simply walk through their home is a blessing.

"It’s an everyday reminder people are still building and trying to get back in," Sherman flood victim Myrtle Mask says.

Nine months ago Contemporary Street was underwater. Homes filled with nearly five feet of flood water and sewage and stuck in the middle of it all were the Masks at 507 Contemporary.

"We wake up not thinking it was that bad and then we open the door and actually realize we have a swimming pool in the back yard."

Myrtle Mask is five feet tall, and has two prosthetic legs, but that morning, she, her husband, and her son grabbed as much as they could, waded to through the neck high water, and left their home of 14-and-a-half years in ruins.

"You never miss anything until you go to reach for it or you have a use for it so we've been in the process of getting everything replaced," said Fred Mask, Myrtle’s husband.

But getting everything replaced comes at a price, close to $37,000 to be exact...

"There isn’t a lot of money," Terri Hartsell is with Grayson Disaster Relief and says there are close to sixty families like the masks whose houses are still heavily damaged.

Luckily for Fred and Myrtle, after months of living with friends and family, they were able to move back home last week, but others are still trying to make enough money to afford repairs.

But thanks to the help of volunteer groups and friends, the masks have been able to do it.

"We’d like to thank all of our friends because we actually found out we had some friends that actually stepped up," the Masks said.

And the feeling is indescribable...

"How does it feel? See the smile, feels like home it’s been great and there’s still a lot of work to do, but it’s good to be back home."

"It’s just good to be back so you try not to think of what was and you build towards the future."

Grayson Disaster Relief is still looking for volunteers to help get families back on track. They will be hosting an informational meeting next Thursday at 7:30 p.m. at the United Methodist Church in Sherman.

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  • by me Location: Denison on Mar 24, 2008 at 05:52 PM
    Sounds like Katrina all over again.
  • by jm Location: Sherman on Mar 24, 2008 at 02:49 PM
    I'm just glad that a family is getting help and able to move back into their home...there is a thing called mitigation that can help with flooding issues. We can hope that everybody will take some precautions...and let's not forget that there are still a lot of people who have not recovered/are not in their homes/or have nothing in their homes.
  • by me Location: sherman on Mar 24, 2008 at 10:04 AM
    Well, it's your choice to stay in the flood plain. Now I know why my homeowners insurance keeps going up for mold. Hope you rebuilt on stilts.
  • by Boo Location: Sherman on Mar 24, 2008 at 07:04 AM
    If you own the home where else are you supposed to move to? Of course we have to live there... think we could sell for profit about right now? After the floods in the 80's they were supposed to build 6 flood control lakes... hmmmm wonder where those went? Believe they already got (and spent) the money....
  • by midniteryder Location: Sherman on Mar 23, 2008 at 10:24 PM
    FEMA- Failing in Every Major Accident. That said, why do we continue to build in floodplains?
  • by me Location: sherman on Mar 23, 2008 at 10:33 AM
    Are they moving back to the same flood plain?
  • by Boo Location: Sherman on Mar 23, 2008 at 06:52 AM
    9 months? Some of us never left..
  • by personal Location: personal on Mar 22, 2008 at 12:27 AM
    I had a friend that was hurt by the flood also. It caused a lot of stress on a lot of people. Thank God for Jesus because I don't think many people could have made it through that if it was not for him. Also thank god for all of the people that helped her with her house... that was very nice of them to take time out of their busy schedules to help her out with her house.
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