Cleanup in La Grange begins after Colorado River inundates city

Business owners and families return to La Grange after flood waters sweep thrugh city. (KXAN Photo/Kate Weidaw)
Business owners and families return to La Grange after flood waters sweep thrugh city. (KXAN Photo/Kate Weidaw)

LA GRANGE, Texas (KXAN) — Days after Hurricane Harvey dumped heavy rain in Central Texas, community members in La Grange are getting their first look at the damage left behind.

Larry Harrington has worked at Oma’s Choice, a downtown business that distributes treats like pies and jerky, for nearly a decade and has never seen the Colorado River rise as high as it did after the storm.

“I’ve seen it flood, but nothing like this,” Harrington said. “They say this is the first time in 100 years it’s gotten this high. I’m not quite that old.”

Harrington returned to the business for the first time Tuesday morning. With a flashlight in hand, he got a look at what’s left. The water destroyed most of the company’s stock, submerging cases full of candied jalapenos, dill pickles and peaches.

“It’s just stuff all over,” he said. “Water was about five feet deep in there. I don’t know how long it will take to get this straightened up. It’s going to take a while.”

He isn’t the only one with a lot of work to do after the storm. Just down the road the floodwaters destroyed homes.

“There was a trailer, a mobile home on this side, then across the road there was the mailboxes,” La Grange resident Daniel Wedding described as he surveyed the damage. “Everything down here is done. All of them.”

Wedding said he got out just in time, loading up everything he could as soon as city officials started encouraging people to evacuate. No matter how slow the process, Wedding said he knows he and his neighbors will rebuild.

“I’m a survivor,” he said.

His resilience is echoed throughout the community. “It is what it is I guess,” Harrington said. “We just have to see what we can do and start over.”

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