Summerville residents rally together as they recover from devastating floods

Summerville residents rally together as they recover from devastating floods
Published: Sep. 13, 2022 at 4:52 PM EDT
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SUMMERVILLE, Ga. (CBS46) - It’s been more than a week since devastating floods ripped through homes and businesses in Summerville. Since then, the community has come together to help those in need with the help of non-profit organizations like the Salvation Army.

Nestled in northwest Georgia, the City of Summerville saw record-breaking rain that dumped nearly 13 inches of rain on the city and surrounding areas. Homes were under water. Even the city’s water treatment plant was submerged. A week later, the water is back on, but it’s still not safe for drinking and cooking.

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The local Salvation Army, based out of nearby Rome, is helping to feed those in need. They’ve set up multiple mobile kitchens, serving nearly 15,000 hot meals.

“Either being on the front lines passing out food or talking to a neighbor to see, oh do you have another neighbor who needs food – or do you have somebody,” said Cindy Puryear of the Salvation Army.

Small businesses were impacted too. The home goods store Dirt Design & Decor in the center of town is back open, but with limited hours. Cleaning equipment is now a part of the showroom floor, which saw floodwaters nearly three feet deep.

“The water actually pushed the doors open and we stood up here and watched our merchandise float down the street,” said Heather Casey, owner of Dirt Design & Decor.

Casey estimates they lost upwards of $200,000 in merchandise, but you can’t put a price on the support she’s received from the Summerville community and beyond.

“There’s nothing like it. There’s no way to describe it,” said Casey. “The realness in the relationships, the realness in the people. The amount of help and support and even if they can’t physically help – just knowing the amount of people praying for you.”

The Salvation Army says they worked in conjunction with city and county leaders to coordinate meal deliveries. The local church community also pitched in. Dry Valley Baptist Church, just outside of town, donated its kitchen and parking lot as a Salvation Army staging area.

The Salvation Army is accepting monetary donations for this disaster and disasters they respond to in the future.