RICHTON, MS (WDAM) - The Richton community in Perry County was slammed with flooding that took place last Thursday evening through the weekend.
The severe weather destroyed several homes and damaged roadways within the county, affecting residents' safety and their ability to travel.
We spoke with Darlene Finley, who evacuated right before the storms happened and returned to a damaged home. Now, she and her grandchildren are still recovering.
“All of our pictures, family Bibles, things that can’t be replaced are gone,” Finley said.
She said they are on day three going through rooms throwing out what they can no longer use due to water damage, and she adds they still have a long way to go.
“I can’t even get to the furniture at this time because we are trying to salvage things that we can use now,” said Finley.
Finley and her granddaughters must wear face masks to protect them from the smell that she calls unbearable.
“It smells horrible. There’s no describing it. It’s not only the rotting food from inside, it’s the stench from the flood waters,” Finely added.
Many volunteer agencies have reached out to the Emergency Management office in Perry County looking for how they can assist victims, and Finely outlines a list of things she’d find helpful in their time of need.
"Cleaning supplies are needed for all of us, personal hygiene items. A hot meal a day would help, just one hot meal and of course prayer. Prayers is the biggest thing,” said Finley.
Perry County Emergency Management Director Gerry Burns said they’ve been between two phases over the last few days. Response and recovery and the process to assess the damage and address needs could take some time, but he urges residents to reach out. Let them know what’s needed and how they can assist.
“People that we haven’t met face-to-face or haven’t gotten in contact with my office, we encourage them to call 601-964-8474, leave their name, their address, leave their phone number and I’ll get it added to our database, which is being shared with other agencies and some volunteer agencies,” said Burns.
The County emergency team said they have up to 75 residents recorded in their database and they expect those numbers to increase as the assessment process continue.
“By the time all this is over and done with, I’m pretty confident we’ll probably be at 150, 200 and that’s private individuals, the homes that are going to be affected in some way or shape or form,” Burns said.