Residents lean on each other as recovery efforts continue in Planada

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Tuesday, January 17, 2023
Residents lean on each other as recovery efforts continue in Planada
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The residents of Planada are making their way home after last week's storm flooded the town.

MERCED COUNTY, Calif. (KFSN) -- The people of Planada are making their way home after last week's storm flooded the town. They said now, the clean-up begins.

"The floor is pretty messed up, all muddy. And then the carpet is all messed up so time to like clean out," said Reyes Chavez, a resident of Planada.

Chavez has lived in his home for two years now.

With the exception of some clothes, everything he owns was destroyed by flooding. Chavez said he just purchased a car but now, it's ruined.

"A lot of us work pretty hard, just to come back and see everything fall apart, it's like dang it sucks," said Chavez.

As the people throw away pieces of their home, community volunteers are on the ground here with helping hands.

Wendy Spencer is from Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. Her congregation reached out and asked for donations from church members.

Spencer says giving back right now is vital to the people of Planada.

"There's just so much need and it didn't take a lot for us to just go in our own homes and find things that we already have to share. We really live in a blessed community," said Spencer.

It's her first day at the community center, which has become a hub for locals. She's surprised by the outpour of community help, especially to those who are just coming home today.

As Chavez was assessing his home, he said Planada is a united community.

This is a major setback but he hopes they'll be back stronger than ever.