My sister, Lynn, lives in Boulder, Colorado. Yes, she was deeply affected by the severe flooding one week ago. Her home was at the foothills and her entire block was flooded, with no one having flood insurance! She had 18 inches of water in her basement and a river in her front yard. She had no electricity, internet, or phone from Thursday to Saturday. After being told on Saturday that she would have to leave her home for 2 months or more for repairs to be done, and the cost being over half of the value of her beautiful home, she headed East for Illinois.
It took her hours to get out of Boulder due to destroyed roads, bridges, and boulders in the road at every turn. She made it out around 6:00 p.m. on Sunday afternoon, and stopped in Nebraska for fuel. She filled her tank, went in to pay, and the clerk said “Oh, honey, were you involved in the flooding?” My sister told her yes and that her home was destroyed pretty much and she packed up her two dogs and left. The clerk told her that her money was no good at that station and gave her a free tank of fuel and food to eat.
My sister drove through the night and was close to Des Moines, Iowa, at about 3:00 a.m., when she was stopped for speeding. She told the officer that she was speeding, she was exhausted and just trying to get to a hotel to sleep and that she was so sorry about it. He took her driver’s license and insurance card and went back to his car. He returned and told her that no-one at his station wants to even give her a ticket so if she promised to slow down, he would escort her to a hotel. It was pouring rain the entire time she was driving. The police officer took her straight to an Econo-Lodge and told her to be careful, no ticket given!
She got inside the Econo-Lodge and asked if she could rent a room with her two big dogs being allowed. The clerk told her the dogs would be $20.00 each more so her total was $100 for the night. When she gave him her driver’s license for verification, he said “Oh, wow, were you involved in the flooding? She told him yes, she was. He said that he would take off the charge for the dogs and half the cost of her room. She was so overwhelmed at this point, she just cried.
She got within 15 miles of home and needed to call and let us know she was coming. She had no cell phone, so she stopped at a local gas station and asked for a pay phone. They told her they didn’t have one and asked what she needed. She told them she just wanted to call and let us know she was coming and where she was, and after seeing she was from Colorado, they gave her another free tank of fuel, a phone, and more food to eat.
I can’t say how proud I am to live in the Midwest. My sister received more love and support from strangers in two days than she had in her life! She’ll be fine, she’s here, our arms are wide, and our love endless. I just wish I could thank each and every one of those strangers for helping my sister during such a traumatic time in her life. What a wonderful gift!!!