Resident still tries to rebuild

FORT PLAIN – Eric Walters of Reid Street is still rebuilding his home, which was damaged in last June’s flood.

After a year, his 91 Reid St. house is still gutted. Weakened support beams hold up the home’s second floor as he works to rebuild it.

The project is a long effort, he said. He expects to finish by next year.

On June 28, 2013, the eight-year village resident had left early for work as a construction worker.

“About 9 a.m., my friend came over and started showing me pictures of Fort Plain being flooded,” Walters said. “I said, ‘No, that had to be from 2006. He said, ‘No, that is happening right now.'”

Walters left work and rushed back home to find the bridge to Reid Street blocked. By 1 p.m., he managed to get to his house.

“It was pretty bad,” Walters said.

The house had roughly a foot and a half of water in it, destroying much of the first floor.

Walters found a number of problems as a result of the flood.

“I pretty much had to gut the whole floor, then the inspector and engineer wanted the ceilings down and the walls down to the studs,” Walters said. “They say I have a lot of structural issues.”

He also found problems with the wiring.

“They said I was lucky I didn’t have my house burn down too,” Walters said.

Walters said the recovery has been tough.

He said he has no insurance and a lot of repairs still need to be done.

He received a check from the state for $31,900 to pay for some of the repairs.

In total. Walters said he expects the repairs to cost roughly $60,000.

Walters said he will rebuild, and he understands why many others have chosen to rebuild.

“People [have] their homes here. Everybody knows each other,” Walters said.