The Star Beacon; Ashtabula, Ohio

July 4, 2013

Dorset family loses home, contents to flood damage

By STACY MILLBERG - smillberg@starbeacon.com
Star Beacon

DORSET TOWNSHIP — It only took a matter of hours to ruin a lifetime of memories.

Just one week ago torrential rain moved through the area leaving Randy and Ethyl Wright, and their daughter Amanda, without a home. As much of the county saw extensive flooding, Dorset Township seemed to take the brunt of it.

The Wright’s, who live on Route 193, lost everything to the storm. The roadway was flooded from the Wright’s property to Tower Road and about 6 inches of water seeped into the home.

The couple purchased the home in 1977. It was the home Randy grew up in.

“We purchased the house from my mother after my father passed away,” he said.

Now, more than 35 years of memories have been washed away.

With nowhere to go and a home that was no longer inhabitable, the Wright’s sought help from their church, the Dorset Baptist Church. Their pastor, Ed Pickard, set the wheels in motion and enlisted the help of H2O Missions, a county-wide group that lends assistance to those in need.

Several members of the group worked for hours Wednesday to try and make some headway at the home. The group filled a large Dumpster with furniture, carpet, clothing, appliances, electronics and much more that were lost to water damage.

“We filled the Dumpster with what was ruined and set aside what they could save,” said Lee DeyErmand, of H2O Missions.

Several churches from all over the county were represented during the clean-up efforts and a local company donated the use of the Dumpster as well.

Pickard lined up a house in Dorset for the Wrights to stay in short-term. The house is for sale and plans are in the works to possibly make it a permanent solution.

While the family has a home to live in, they are still lacking some of the much-needed items used in every day life.

“We had to throw away televisions and other electronics,” DeyErmand said. “The refrigerator, that they just purchased a year ago was under water and can’t be used now.”

The family lost a lot of clothing as well as beds, linens and other appliances.

A lot of the items ruined in the flood were left in the house because of mold. The Wright’s will have to go through what is left to see what else they can salvage.

“We had a lot of things from my grandparents and great-grandparents that we lost,” Randy said. “Anything that was sitting on the floor was ruined.”

Randy, who has health problems, uses a hospital bed, which was also ruined. He also had CPAP and oxygen machines that will need to be replaced as well.

“We saved some clothes but most of our clothes need to be replaced,” he said.

Randy said his family needs to get in the house to survey the extent of the damage before making a decision on what they will do regarding their living situation.

The Wright’s carried a regular homeowner’s insurance policy on the home, but it does not cover flood damage.

The Dorset Baptist Church is accepting donations on behalf of the Wrights. Anyone who would like to donate items they no longer need that could help the family should contact the church to make arrangements.