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Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Homes of Flood Victims Not Salvaged

In the weeks following Irene, we've brought FOX23 followers heartwarming stories of people cleaning up and rebuilding. But in some places, rebuilding wasn't an option.

“It’s awful, I feel like I am at a funeral today,” said Pam Young who watched as crews demolished her Prattsville home.

Monday, Young and her family said good bye to nearly seven decades in the home, looking on as bulldozers wreck the walls that surrounded four generations worth of memories.

“I used to play school with my grandparents in the living room,” explained Pam’s daughter, Jessica.

Pam’s mom Joanne Haskin said it was an emotional day. “I cried when the trucks pulled in, never mind when they hit the house,” she said.

Pam, her son, her nephew, and two dogs were stranded on the roof during Irene. They watched as the flood waters raged below them carrying trucks, trailer homes, and debris downstream.

“I was looking for anything that was floating around that we could jump on and stay together that would float,” Pam recalled. “But it wasn't promising.”

Pam’s 9-year-old son Joey says it was one of the scariest times in his life. “I lost all my clothes, my toys, and my bike,” he said. “I was really, really scared.”

Pam and her family are saving the original wood from the home built back in 1947. They plan on using it to create a memorial in honor of her grandparents to mark the spot where their home used to stand.

“I really wanted the beams saved so we can make a cross to put it on their grave so they have a piece of the house with them,” Jessica said crying.

Pam and Joey have been staying with Jessica and living in hotels for the past month and a half.

“I never dreamed in a million years that I would say I am homeless,” Pam said.

She says the weeks have been long and heartbreaking, and Monday's demolition was even tougher.

But for the family, a sad sense of closure today, means a step toward a new tomorrow.

“We're just putting it to rest, we are going to try and pick up the pieces,” Jessica said.

Pam and her family are finding a glimmer of hope during a very dark time – just thankful to be alive.

“It's made me appreciate things more and to be more grateful for what we do have, and that we have each other,” Pam said.

They don't plan on staying or rebuilding in Prattsville, Pam has a bid in on a house in Rotterdam.

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