Mason County residents fight to keep levee strong

By Denise Jackson

April 26, 2013 Updated Apr 26, 2013 at 10:00 PM CDT

SNICARTE, Ill. -- The slowly receding Illinois River still causing problems for many Central Illinois residents.

Roads near one Mason County community are still flooded, making it impossible to get in or out of town but that's not stopping residents from pulling together to help one another through the disaster.

Red Cross volunteers Craig and Marie Holmes came to Mason County trying to help flood victims in Snicarte.

"I don't think we're going to make it today. We're gonna have to wait until the river is down," Craig Holmes said.

There are three roads leading into Snicarte and all of them are filled or covered with water and the only way in is by boat.

Only about four of the nearly dozen homes in Snicarte are flooded. Residents have worked all week, some without sleep, reinforcing the levee that protects the small town.

"You just got to watch the levee constantly. You don't get any sleep. When you get a leak everybody runs," said resident Tim Fletcher. "Somebody shoots a gun, we go off running cause we know that's the signal, the levee's leaking."

"Every human life is important, every house is important. So we're proud of what we've done," said resident Jeff Hopps. "What's been the biggest challenge this week? Emotionally, making sure that the levee don't break, making sure the town's safe. No help."

Hopps and Fletcher say residents have not evacuated their homes and they hope that over the next few days rain will stay away so the levee will hold and their town can begin to dry out.