Couple overwhelmed by help after the flood PDF Print E-mail
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Thursday, 13 July 2017 07:06

By Bonnie Prindle
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On Saturday, May 21st, Danny and Pam Walton stood outside of Danny’s Heating and Air Conditioning and surveyed the damage done by the flood the night before. The shop’s entire inventory was laid out in the driveway, waterlogged and ruined.

“It was so overwhelming,” said Pam. “I’m standing out here seeing all the stuff in the driveway and thinking, ‘that’s twenty-five years of our life right there.’”

Water levels in the building had risen to five feet, and despite Danny’s best efforts to save the inventory, hardly anything left in the store was salvageable.

As the rain had started to come down on Friday, Danny had headed over to check on his shop and found water already coming up the road. He began to move things higher up on the shelves, and just minutes later he looked outside to see that his pickup was gone and one company van was already sitting in three feet of water. He quickly went outside to move another van to higher water.

“I came back in, and I continued doing what I was doing, unplugging stuff and getting stuff up as high as I could,” said Danny. “All the sudden, the bottom panel of the overhead door blew in. Instantly, three feet of water.”

He called 9-1-1 and was able to get out of the building before the water rose any higher, but the damage to the building had already been done.

The Sunday after the flood, the clean-up began. Relatives came from as far as Mississippi to help out, as well as Seymour, Brownstown, and Columbus. Customers from Danny’s Music Store came to help, and various churches sent volunteers. There were also many strangers who were just looking for ways to lend a hand.

“This one lady and a little girl came in and said, ‘Where do you want us to start?’ and I assumed they knew Pam, so I said, ‘Pam’s over there somewhere, you can go find her and ask her,’” said Danny. “Then later on I asked Pam, ‘Whose kids are those?’ and she said, ‘I don’t know. I’ve never seen them before.’ And there was quite a bit of that.”

They also received help from many local businesses, including Richardson Heating and Air who donated a van, Wineinger Refrigeration who helped powerwash, Temple and Temple who reset the building, P 3 Graphix who designed and applied the graphics to the new equipment, Robertson Crushed Stone who laid down new gravel in the driveway, and Walls Lawn Care who “went above and beyond the call of duty,” according to Danny.

“That’s the life of a small town,” said Pam. “I never realized the respect the community had for Danny until this happened... I don’t know if we would’ve survived if it wasn’t for all the volunteers and the help we got.”

For now, Danny and Pam are taking things one day at at time, and each day is a new project. Whether the project is putting walls around the bathroom or screwing in new light switch covers, they all bring the shop a little closer to returning to business as usual.

Thanks to all the dedicated volunteers and members of the community, Danny’s Heating and Air Conditioning is springing back. The volunteers didn’t ask for anything in return, but in a small town, kindness always has a way of coming back around.

“I was talking to the Amish guys [who had come to help] and I said, ‘I really appreciate you guys coming in,’” said Pam. “And they said, ‘that’s just what we do, ma’am. Pay it forward.”