Community rallies to sandbag homes ahead of potential flooding

Along State Highway 3 in Olive Branch, Illinois, it’s a community effort to save and sandbag homes. 

Stephanie Bledsoe is with her family digging and pitching in. It was her 8-year-old daughter’s idea. "She asked us about it last night. She said she wanted to come out and help with sandbagging," Bledsoe told Local 6.

They aren’t the only ones giving back.  Many of these volunteers lost their homes during the flood of 2011, and they are determined not to let it happen again.

Some of the homeowners in Olive Branch took the federal buyout. Others did not, including the Bigham’s. They’ve been in town since the 1960s, and their granddaughter said the help with sandbagging is more than overwhelming.

"It’s really amazing to see the support that you get from people you’ve probably never even seen in your life," Cambria Bigham said. 

She is spending her college winter break building a man-made levee for her grandparents. She spent the past two days making sure the sandbags are secure.  "We actually accomplished a lot today. More than we expected," she said. 

County commissioners implemented a voluntary evacuation order for Alexander County on Wednesday. 

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