WASHINGTON COUNTY, Tenn. - It's hard to believe but almost three months ago, heavy rain and flooding destroyed nearly 50 homes on Dry Creek Road. Now volunteers are busy rebuilding and it's moving along quickly.
A lot of firsts this week for flood victim Anna Baldwin, the most important being the foundation, "First new home I've ever had. I've had nice homes but this is the first new one."
Baldwin, along with fellow flood victims on Dry Creek Road are seeing a transformation of their neighborhood and it's going quickly. In fact when volunteers showed up Saturday at one home, there was just a floor but they stayed busy putting up walls and the roof. "We'll do the interior walls and when we come back Monday, we'll put in the windows and doors," said volunteer Gary Lorencen.
Volunteers started building basements last Friday, but because of teamwork they're already putting up siding. "It's a lot faster than we had expected and so I think we'll certainly beat that Christmas deadline we were hoping for," said Tim Bomgardner with Appalachia Service Project.
Construction is moving so quickly, it's expected flood victims will be able to move-in to the homes in two to three weeks.
News 5 learned Appalachia Service Project plans on breaking ground on new homes, but there are growing concerns. "In the colder winter months is when we need to utilize the local volunteers. It'll be harder to get people to come from far away to come in and work," added Bomgardner.
For flood victims, it's hard to believe these houses will soon be homes. "He said [Fellow flood victim] 'You know it's going to be a real nice Christmas present.' And I feel the same way," added Baldwin.
There is still the need for furniture, clothing, and food once these homes are move-in ready. Appalachia Service Project is suggesting people call before making any kind of donation. You can call them at their Johnson City headquarters at (423)854-8800.