Flooding isolated entire towns in Vermont and New York, some communities warily watched swollen rivers and more than 2.5 million people from North Carolina to Maine lacked electricity Tuesday, three days after Hurricane Irene churned up the Eastern Seaboard.
The storm has been blamed for at least 40 deaths in 11 states.
When Hurricane Irene unleashed its wrath on Newfane, Vt., Martin and Sue Saylor were among the lucky ones. All they lost was the road to their hillside home, and their utilities.( Collapse )
Ways to help-
Vt Irene Flood Relief
Mad River Valley Community Fund
United Way Vt 211
Op note- This experience is equal parts heart wrenching and warming. It's surreal to see aid helicopters flying over and emergency crews from FEMA and the Red Cross everywhere. The pictures and video just don't do justice to the sheer scale of the destruction. I know many people who are stranded, although most can now leave by foot. Power and internet were out for a long while yesterday and our water was back for a few hours but has since gone off again. Everyone is tired and a little dirty but for the most part tempers are staying in check. Let me say the excited buzz from everyone over the possibility of a Tide Truck is well earned.
The local elementary school is serving three meals a day for the community and restaurants are offering community buffets most nights. Our only grocery store was wiped out and they've taken every bit of stock not ruined in the flooding and moved it to the school to be taken as needed, free of charge. Neighbors have opened their wells and holding tanks and are going door to door to see if anyone needs help. Aid workers are constantly going to job sites only to find work already in progress. Things are bad, and I expect them to be for quite some time, but we're starting to get our stubborn boots on, which is probably the best thing we could do in the situation.
In closing- I love Vermont because of her hills and valleys, her scenery and invigorating climate, but most of all because of her indomitable people. They are a race of pioneers who have almost beggared themselves to serve others. If the spirit of liberty should vanish in other parts of the Union, and support of our institutions should languish, it could all be replenished from the generous store held by the people of this brave little state of Vermont." --Calvin Coolidge after the 1927 flood