By Scott Thomas
KFVS12 Vice President and General Manager
"It's supposed to be a hundred year flood, and they're coming every year now."
--Kenny Lindsey, Dutchtown, Missouri
Those words from one flood victim ring true across Southeast Missouri and Southern Illinois right now. Scenes like this are becoming all too familiar but so are the images beyond this devastation that show just how much the Heartland cares.
Here in downtown Cape Girardeau, SEMO football players decided, on their own, they wanted to help fill sandbags. A Facebook post brought kids from Notre Dame high school out to help save an elderly man's home. The same happened in Alexander County, strangers working side by side to save this home from a third flood in just six years. Local businesses are stepping up with donations. And you can too. Simply text RedCross to 90999 to donate 10 dollars to flood relief.
We commend everyone who's helping, but please, don't make a bad situation worse. Don't go into flooded towns or neighborhoods to check out the damage for yourself. Don't stop along a busy bridge just to get a quick picture or video. EMA directors and law enforcement warn, sightseers are only getting in the way of the real work to be done. And we can say, "don't drive through floodwaters!" a million times, and yet it still happens. We've lost two lives already. The Missouri Highway Patrol sends this message: get caught and you will be ticketed, and likely prosecuted.
Spring Flood '17 has clearly left its mark on the Heartland. We know this water WILL go down and, with time and effort, life WILL return to normal. Until then, help if you can but don't harm. The water's already got that part covered..
I'm Scott Thomas and that's our ViewPoint.
You can also donate at RedCross.org