ST. PETERS, Mo. – Six months have passed since historic flash flooding slammed much of the St. Louis metropolitan area.
One group of Lutheran Christian servants spent part of the weekend helping people in a St. Peters subdivision repair their homes.
Patrick Bales and his wife Brianna have lived in the Copperfield neighborhood along Barrington Drive for seven years. When their basement flooded after historic rainfall last summer, they salvaged what they could and put their valuables in the garage.
“Due to the overflow of the sewer, we had probably about 12 to 18 inches in our basement,” said Bales. “We ended up losing all of our appliances, and a lot of computers and stuff like that down there, because that was kind of our gaming nerd space.”
They lost appliances like their water heater, HVAC unit and washer/dryer. However, they are getting help replacing them thanks to a group with the Lutheran Early Response Team.
Ryan Taylor is a pastor at Immanuel Lutheran Church and School in St. Charles. He learned about the homes impacted after several of his congregation members experienced flooding.
“It’s all the work of volunteers who just want to come out and do this,” said Taylor. “We don’t contract anything out, and the group of guys and gals who are out here doing this just want to do it. They come out every day with joy, and they’re so thankful to be able to do something like this on behalf of their neighbors here in St. Peter’s.”
“There has been about 75 different volunteers over the six months that have been here from four different states and 13 different Lutheran churches,” said Chris Schult, volunteering with LERT.
Since July’s historic flooding, water from a nearby creek entered dozens of homes in the Copperfield subdivision alone. Since then, volunteers have been able to raise more than $60,000 to make repairs in over 60 homes.
“We use that grant money for buying drywall and tools and other material and lunches and water and everything it takes behind the scenes to be able to do something like this,” Schult said.
Repairs will continue for the next couple weeks as the group finishes up the final ten homes on their list.
“It’s just been a wonderful act of mercy that we’ve been able to do for all of these people out here who really may not have had the means to, to fix anything that they had,” Taylor said.
“I am so grateful to the Lutheran Church. They’ve helped out so many houses in our neighborhood,” said Bales.