Collection: One Year Anniversary of Iowa Floods

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IA Severe Storms, Tornadoes, and Flooding (DR-1763) Declared: 05/27/2008
Collection Created:
September 20, 2013
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  • FEMA Administrator Craig Fugate visits on of the hardest hit areas of Cedar Rapids, IA. The tour was lead by City Councilman Chuck Wieneke who represents the historic Time Check Community. Cedar Rapids Mayor Kay Halloran, Iowa Governor Chet Culver, Congressman Dave Loebsack, Iowa Homeland Security's Dave Miller, Rebuild Iowa Director Lt General Ron Dardis and dozens of other dignitaries also participated in the tour. Administrator Fugate also talks with residents of the area and holds a press conference.

    Administrator Craig Fugate tours Cedar Rapids, IA

    Video by Vincent Clark
    FEMA Administrator Craig Fugate visits on of the hardest hit areas of Cedar Rapids, IA. The tour was lead by City Councilman Chuck Wieneke who represents the historic Time Check Community. Cedar Rapids Mayor Kay Halloran, Iowa Governor Chet Culver, Congressman Dave Loebsack, Iowa Homeland Security's Dave Miller, Rebuild Iowa Director Lt General Ron Dardis and dozens of other dignitaries also participated in the tour. Administrator Fugate also talks with residents of the area and holds a press conference.
  • In the early summer of 2008, intense storms and flooding caused severe damage across Iowa.  This was one of the worst disasters in Iowa's history.  Iowa FedEx Freight chose to partner with FEMA and the state of Iowa to provide water and other life-saving supplies at the height of the response to the disaster.

    FedEx Assists FEMA with Material Distribution in Iowa

    Video by Mark Meytin
    In the early summer of 2008, intense storms and flooding caused severe damage across Iowa. This was one of the worst disasters in Iowa's history. Iowa FedEx Freight chose to partner with FEMA and the state of Iowa to provide water and other life-saving supplies at the height of the response to the disaster.
  • In the summer of 2008, flooding devastated Iowa.  More than 100 people signed on with VISTA Americorps to come to Iowa for the summer and do the dirty work of flood cleanup.  Vista workers have their room and board provided and receive a small stipend plus a scholarship or cash award at the end of their service.  Funding for the Iowa summer program was provided, in part, by a grant from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).

    VISTA AmeriCorps comes to Iowa to help in cleanup

    Video by Mark Meytin
    In the summer of 2008, flooding devastated Iowa. More than 100 people signed on with VISTA Americorps to come to Iowa for the summer and do the dirty work of flood cleanup. Vista workers have their room and board provided and receive a small stipend plus a scholarship or cash award at the end of their service. Funding for the Iowa summer program was provided, in part, by a grant from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA).
  • In early June of 2008 Washington Irving Elementary School in Waverly, Iowa was virtually destroyed by severe flooding. After a year in a temporary facility things are looking brighter for this Iowa community. On April 7, 2009 the citizens of Waverly passed an $18.925 million bond referendum by a 65.3% approval margin to rebuild the damaged schools. Additionally, a grant from FEMA in the amount of $9.375 million for the relocation and restoration of Washington Irving School has entered the final approval process.

    Waverly Iowa - What a difference a year makes

    Video by Leo 'Jace' Anderson
    In early June of 2008 Washington Irving Elementary School in Waverly, Iowa was virtually destroyed by severe flooding. After a year in a temporary facility things are looking brighter for this Iowa community. On April 7, 2009 the citizens of Waverly passed an $18.925 million bond referendum by a 65.3% approval margin to rebuild the damaged schools. Additionally, a grant from FEMA in the amount of $9.375 million for the relocation and restoration of Washington Irving School has entered the final approval process.
  • A playground called Miracle:  The Parkersburg, Iowa May 25, 2008 tornado destroyed the swimming pool park playground.  Two weeks later, two local citizens started a Rebuild the Playground Park Committee and began the process of soliciting funds from businesses and the private sector along with having the entire rebuild done by volunteers and adding a second park on the east side of town.  Dedication of the new Miracle playground park will be on May 24. 2009.

    A Playground Park Called Miracle

    Video by Leo 'Jace' Anderson
    A playground called Miracle: The Parkersburg, Iowa May 25, 2008 tornado destroyed the swimming pool park playground. Two weeks later, two local citizens started a Rebuild the Playground Park Committee and began the process of soliciting funds from businesses and the private sector along with having the entire rebuild done by volunteers and adding a second park on the east side of town. Dedication of the new Miracle playground park will be on May 24. 2009.
  • More than 400 customers of Southwest Regional Water District were without water service in June of 2008 when floodwaters broke an 8-inch water main. Now, not only has that water main been replaced, but the repair will help save the water district thousands of dollars thanks to mitigation efforts through FEMA's Public Assistance Program.

    West Nodaway - the right way

    Video by Leo 'Jace' Anderson
    More than 400 customers of Southwest Regional Water District were without water service in June of 2008 when floodwaters broke an 8-inch water main. Now, not only has that water main been replaced, but the repair will help save the water district thousands of dollars thanks to mitigation efforts through FEMA's Public Assistance Program.
  • Iowa suffered devastating flooding during the summer months of 2008. The subsequent loss of housing in cities like Cedar Rapids caused a major crisis. This is the story of three residents who participated in a FEMA pilot program for assisting with that housing need.

    Rental Repair Pilot Program

    Video by Leo 'Jace' Anderson
    Iowa suffered devastating flooding during the summer months of 2008. The subsequent loss of housing in cities like Cedar Rapids caused a major crisis. This is the story of three residents who participated in a FEMA pilot program for assisting with that housing need.
  • The Wapsipinicon Mill a historical landmark near Independence, Iowa, received extensive structural damage as a result of the June 2008 floods.  The museum director gives a brief history of the museum, discusses the damage, the funding assistance this non-for-profit
has received and the future repairs to the mill.

    Historical landmark will stand for years

    Video by Leo 'Jace' Anderson
    The Wapsipinicon Mill a historical landmark near Independence, Iowa, received extensive structural damage as a result of the June 2008 floods. The museum director gives a brief history of the museum, discusses the damage, the funding assistance this non-for-profit has received and the future repairs to the mill.
  • Temporary Facilities Assistance Support First Responders:  Federal/state funding assistance helps the Cedar Rapids Fire Dept. relocate to two temporary fire stations after the June 2008 flooding of the Central Fire Station.  The Chief discusses the funding, the usage and how the Army Corp of Engineers took an empty warehouse and transformed it into a temporary fire station.

    Temporary Facilities Support First Responders

    Video by Leo 'Jace' Anderson
    Temporary Facilities Assistance Support First Responders: Federal/state funding assistance helps the Cedar Rapids Fire Dept. relocate to two temporary fire stations after the June 2008 flooding of the Central Fire Station. The Chief discusses the funding, the usage and how the Army Corp of Engineers took an empty warehouse and transformed it into a temporary fire station.
  • Wrestling teaches you how to get of your back:  The Dan Gable Wrestling Museum in Waterloo, Iowa sustained heavy damage as a result of the June 2008 floods.  Through FEMA Public Assistance funding and private donations the museum was able to recover, rebuild and reopen in January 2009.  The museum director discusses the damage, the cleanup, the rebuild, and the funding process along with a description of the museum.

    Dan Gable Wrestling Museum

    Video by Leo 'Jace' Anderson
    Wrestling teaches you how to get of your back: The Dan Gable Wrestling Museum in Waterloo, Iowa sustained heavy damage as a result of the June 2008 floods. Through FEMA Public Assistance funding and private donations the museum was able to recover, rebuild and reopen in January 2009. The museum director discusses the damage, the cleanup, the rebuild, and the funding process along with a description of the museum.
  • (Cedar Rapids) Sharon Smith and her family lived in a FEMA mobile home for four months after their home in Cedar Rapids was flooded in June, 2008. The FEMA Individual Assistance Program provided a grant for home repairs as well as a mobile home in near by Marion Iowa. Sharon and her family moved back to their home in November 2008.

    A Roof Over My Head

    Video by Leo 'Jace' Anderson
    (Cedar Rapids) Sharon Smith and her family lived in a FEMA mobile home for four months after their home in Cedar Rapids was flooded in June, 2008. The FEMA Individual Assistance Program provided a grant for home repairs as well as a mobile home in near by Marion Iowa. Sharon and her family moved back to their home in November 2008.
  • Iowa City, Iowa  -  The Iowa City Animal Shelter was forced to seek a new location after the flood of 2008.They decided a mitigation project was not feasible and are now at a temporary location while they search for a new permanent site. FEMA provided funds for the move.

    Iowa City Animal Shelter

    Video by Leo 'Jace' Anderson
    Iowa City, Iowa - The Iowa City Animal Shelter was forced to seek a new location after the flood of 2008.They decided a mitigation project was not feasible and are now at a temporary location while they search for a new permanent site. FEMA provided funds for the move.
  • Oakville Iowa.  The flood of 2008 inundated the entire town of Oakville. Some resident worried the town would not recover, but thanks to Mayor Benita Grooms  determination and FEMA's help, the town is rebuilding.

    Oakville Mayor fights to Save Town

    Video by Leo 'Jace' Anderson
    Oakville Iowa. The flood of 2008 inundated the entire town of Oakville. Some resident worried the town would not recover, but thanks to Mayor Benita Grooms determination and FEMA's help, the town is rebuilding.
  • Slideshow of the affected areas that have drastically recovered in the last year.

    Iowa Then and Now: Photo Slideshow

    Video by Aaron Skolnik
    Slideshow of the affected areas that have drastically recovered in the last year.
  • Muscatine Iowa.  Since 1993, the city of Muscatine had to spend thousands of dollars to repair a playground which has been damaged by flood waters four times including the flood of 2008. Thanks to a FEMA mitigation project, however, the city will have its playground and save thousands of dollars if it floods again.

    Muscastine Playground Rebuild

    Video by Leo 'Jace' Anderson
    Muscatine Iowa. Since 1993, the city of Muscatine had to spend thousands of dollars to repair a playground which has been damaged by flood waters four times including the flood of 2008. Thanks to a FEMA mitigation project, however, the city will have its playground and save thousands of dollars if it floods again.
  • The cities of Parkersburg and New Hartford, Iowa were hit by a devastating tornado on May 25, 2008. This is the story of the state/federal funding assistance both of these communities received and the recovery, renewal and rebuilding that changed those horrific days into a 'triumph of renewal.'

    Turning Tragedy into Triumph

    Video by Leo 'Jace' Anderson
    The cities of Parkersburg and New Hartford, Iowa were hit by a devastating tornado on May 25, 2008. This is the story of the state/federal funding assistance both of these communities received and the recovery, renewal and rebuilding that changed those horrific days into a 'triumph of renewal.'
  • Native American tribes are sovereign nations with their own governments and can choose to work with FEMA on a government-to-government basis, or they may work with their own state to get assistance. The June 2008 flooding of the Iowa River caused considerable damage on the Meskwaki settlement near Tama, Iowa. The settlement is home to the Sac and Fox and they chose to work with FEMA as government-to-government.

    FEMA assists Tribe in Recovery

    Video by Leo 'Jace' Anderson
    Native American tribes are sovereign nations with their own governments and can choose to work with FEMA on a government-to-government basis, or they may work with their own state to get assistance. The June 2008 flooding of the Iowa River caused considerable damage on the Meskwaki settlement near Tama, Iowa. The settlement is home to the Sac and Fox and they chose to work with FEMA as government-to-government.
  • This video covers the ceremonies that occurred Memorial Day Weekend 2009 and the activities of the One Year Anniversary of the tornado that struck this rural community of Parkersburg, Iowa.  It discusses how the community is doing one year later, highlights the dedication of the new Miracle Playground park along with social activities like the community picnic and a social gathering at the Emergency Management Services building.
The video ends at a memorial service on the grounds of the elementary school where prayers and blessing are given to those who lost their lives.  A bell tolls at 4:59 PM; the exact moment the tornado roared into with the reading of the names of those who died.

    Renewal with Remembrance

    Video by Leo 'Jace' Anderson
    This video covers the ceremonies that occurred Memorial Day Weekend 2009 and the activities of the One Year Anniversary of the tornado that struck this rural community of Parkersburg, Iowa. It discusses how the community is doing one year later, highlights the dedication of the new Miracle Playground park along with social activities like the community picnic and a social gathering at the Emergency Management Services building. The video ends at a memorial service on the grounds of the elementary school where prayers and blessing are given to those who lost their lives. A bell tolls at 4:59 PM; the exact moment the tornado roared into with the reading of the names of those who died.
  • A tornado...then a massive flood hit Iowa in late May and early June of 2008. The initial Federal Coordinating Officer for the declared disaster, Bill Vogel, describes the incredible amount of tornado damage he first saw in Parkersburg and the flood damaged 1300 city blocks in Cedar Rapids.

    Iowa Responder Remembers and Reflects

    Video by Leo 'Jace' Anderson
    A tornado...then a massive flood hit Iowa in late May and early June of 2008. The initial Federal Coordinating Officer for the declared disaster, Bill Vogel, describes the incredible amount of tornado damage he first saw in Parkersburg and the flood damaged 1300 city blocks in Cedar Rapids.
  • Des Moines, Iowa  After watching the town he lives in get inundated with flood waters in the historic Iowa floods of 2008, Tom Watson of Palo, Iowa knows that you cannot stop the water from flowing. 

But with a little ingenuity, and some good old fashioned common sense, Watson and Palo officials have come up with ways so waters from swollen streams can be diverted or siphoned off to lessen the impact of future flooding and protect the citizens and business owners of Palo.

    For the town of Palo, little things make a big difference in flood protection

    Video by Leo 'Jace' Anderson
    Des Moines, Iowa After watching the town he lives in get inundated with flood waters in the historic Iowa floods of 2008, Tom Watson of Palo, Iowa knows that you cannot stop the water from flowing. But with a little ingenuity, and some good old fashioned common sense, Watson and Palo officials have come up with ways so waters from swollen streams can be diverted or siphoned off to lessen the impact of future flooding and protect the citizens and business owners of Palo.

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