The Muckalee is usually as still as a farm pond, withlittle stirring, except the birds and frogs. But 20 years ago, it was also terrifying.
"Living in this place is so special," said Ned Newcomb, Flood Survivor. "I never that this still water could turn into what it did, I mean, we don't have flash floods in south Georgia, but we did that night."
Overnight July 6th and into the 7th, the quiet little creek roared to life. "It was white water. You could hear it from inside the house, and it sounded just like you were next to a waterfall."
Newcomb got trapped in his childhood home after his parents failed to get out in time. "My parents were like go help your brother, he thinks it's gonna flood. When Ned got word of unbelievable flash flooding going on a few miles upstream on North Hampton Road, he rushed to get his parents out.Ned and his dad returned.
"I walked out on the dock, loosened the lines on the board, and stepped back on the dock, and in that short a time, I was ankle deep in water, and then I realized we were in trouble.
They planned to beat the water and save his parents' belongings but soon realized that was a battle unwinnable. "We did not save anything."
They ended up climbing these stairs, then watching the water consume them step by step till only a few remained dry. "We stayed upstairs and about six in the morning, we came out that window, and the water was level with the eaves of the houses."
They climbed into a boat they had tied next to the house and took a dangerous ride to safety and didn't come back for a week and a half.
"The house was a wreck." Ned's parents moved in upstairs for the long rebuilding process which by late November, thankfully, was complete. "We had Thanksgiving dinner here." Ned's parents lived here until they died.
Now, he and his wife Mary live in the old stone house that was a rock against a record flood. "I wouldn't want to be anywhere else."
Next to the creek they hope stays still and quiet. Because of better forecasting, more sources for real-time weather information, and a new flood gauge on the Muckalee. Ned doesn't believe folks there will be caught of guard again.
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