‘It’s heartbreaking’: Some residents in Craig evacuate as levees break, flood waters rise

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CRAIG, Mo. — Residents in Craig hope the levees they’ve made using dirt and sandbags will protect their homes and businesses.

On Tuesday afternoon, another levee broke two miles west of town. The city ordered a “mandatory evacuation” — though they aren’t forcing residents to leave.

So while some are staying in those homes, hoping the flood water doesn’t reach them, others are heeding the advice and leaving their homes.

The change in flood levels over 24 hours in Craig, Missouri.

“We put things up, and today we moved out,” Charmaine Flint said. “We’re going up to Oregon, and we’ll stay until the duration of what they feel is safe.”

For those who want to evacuate but don’t want to go too far, First Christian Church in Mound City has opened as a shelter for those needing it.

“We have bedding setup for them. We have cots ready to go, and we’re going to be providing them meals,” said Cindy Rule with the church.

Laura Mutchler is one of a dozen people staying at the shelter so far. She wanted to move her grandchildren to higher grounds.

“It’s heartbreaking to leave your home and everything you’ve got. You don’t know if you can go back to it or not,” the 73-year-old said.

“The shelter is going to be here as long as it’s needed,” Rule said.

Those who decided to stay in Craig continued to fill sandbags Tuesday night, hoping that the temporary levees surrounding the town will hold back the swollen Missouri River.

Even if the levees hold overnight, there’s still concern about the coming days.

“I think most worry is on Thursday and Friday when that rush comes down here, and we don’t know if it’s going to recede or bounce back up,” Flint said.

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