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Physical And Emotional Mess Remains After Va. Flooding

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Scott Beranek (in blue) says each dumpster gets filled and hauled to the landfill 4-5 times each day.
Jonathan Wilson
Scott Beranek (in blue) says each dumpster gets filled and hauled to the landfill 4-5 times each day.

Scott Beranek runs the small home improvement company Vista Properties, and for the past two days, he and another worker have started the intimidating task of demolishing the dozens of trailers left uninhabitable by the flooding that ravaged Holly Acres Mobile Home Park after Tropical Storm Lee in August.

"We're looking at probably three and a half weeks. Seven days a week, 12 hours a day," says Beranek, of the work.

Beranek is volunteering his time. He says just getting the right equipment cost about $50,000, but thankfully it's been donated by other area companies.

"We need more companies to step up and donate more dumpsters," Beranek says. "Right now we've got about 30 donated, so we're about 120 shy of where we need to be."

Maribel Cervantes used to live in one of the ruined trailers at Holly Acres with her husband, baby and in-laws. Right now, the family is staying with relatives andwould like to find a new place, but it's a challenge financially. Their old rent was $800 a month, and she says they're having trouble finding anything under $1,300 a month now.

Even so, Cervantes says the help the community has given so far has been overwhelming.

"I just want to thank all those people -- people who've given clothes, donations. I just wanna thank all those people," she said in a phone interview Friday.

More help may be on the way. Beranek says there could be nearly $20,000 of scrap metal at the mobile home park. He's hoping to split that money amongst the families victimized by the flood.


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