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Couple digs themselves out after storm floods house they built together

Joy Wang
October 06, 2017 06:39 PM

SOCORRO, N.M. – Decades’ worth of memorabilia, hundreds of dollars’ worth of tools and years of hard work are now destroyed as a Socorro family works to dig itself out of floodwaters that turned their home into a swamp Thursday night during a thunderstorm.

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The Cardwells built their home 42 years ago when they first got married. Now it’s completely flooded and covered in mud, and they’re devastated.

“When there’s water rushing, stay out of it. That’s all I can say,” Robert Cardwell said. “I thought I was going to lose her. That’s the scariest part.”

If it wasn’t for their determination, who knows what would have happened to the Cardwells themselves after a storm flooded a nearby arroyo and rushed water into their home.

“I was pretty scared. I was walking and the water was just like taking me, and I didn’t know,” Karen Cardwell said. “So I figured I’d pull the weeds and I was pulling the weeds out, too, and it was coming down pretty bad. It was just pushing me.”

They tried rescuing the dogs and quickly drove the cars out of the ditch.

“When I got down here and waded over to the house and opened the door, the dog’s standing there in the cage with his back and his head out of the water, just waiting to be rescued,” Robert Cardwell said.

Now their furniture is soaking wet and the floor is covered in mud.

“[At] midnight or so, 1 [a.m.], we got the house drained,” Robert Cardwell said. “And we were tired and we just laid down on wet couches and fell asleep.”

They’re still in the process of cleaning up, but it’s hard to even get in their home without slipping or sinking in the pit outside. The water swept away memories and years of hard work put into the house, but the Cardwells say they’re thankful it didn’t take away their loved ones.

“Pick up the pieces and move on,” Robert Cardwell said. “We have each other. That’s all the foundation we need to build off of.”

Credits

Joy Wang

Copyright 2017 KOB-TV LLC, a Hubbard Broadcasting Company. All rights reserved

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