Missouri Guard stops rising flood waters
May 5, 2011
SIKESTON, Mo. (Army News Service, May 5, 2011) -- Sandbagging the main road throughout the night, units from the Missouri National Guard's 'Rising Tide' task force of 760 Soldiers and Airmen were finally able to gain control over rising waters that threatened to flood Canalou, Mo., in New Madrid County.
While residents and local authorities worked to save the small town in the southeast part of the state, Guardsman from the 1138th Engineer Sapper Company, 880th Engineer Haul Team and 220th Engineer Company worked feverishly building a makeshift levee of rocks and dirt with sandbags on top to divert the water into outlying fields.
Spc. Ned Williams of the 220th Eng. Co., was glad he had the opportunity to work with fellow engineers alongside members of the community.
"It was a good experience to work with Soldiers from other units," said Williams. "The interaction with us and the community was great."
Linda Robinson, a Canalou resident, said the town would have been in much worse shape had the Soldiers not arrived and gone to work as quickly as they did.
"I have lived here for 42 years and I have never seen anything like this before," said Robinson, who was there as the Soldiers sandbagged all night. "If it weren't for the National Guard, I don't know what we would have done."
Canalou Mayor Jim Taul, a retired Army first sergeant, was able to move possessions out of his flooded house while monitoring the town's citizens and Soldiers as they fought the flood waters.
"My house was already underwater, but we had to keep the water from going any further," said Taul.
Missouri National Guard Soldiers continue to respond quickly to changing conditions in the southeast Missouri region by providing sandbagging and evacuation support along with levee monitoring, route reconnaissance, security, traffic control and door-to-door safety checks.
Units supporting the flood response include:
7th Civil Support Team, Jefferson City
70th Troop Command, Jefferson Barracks
Whiteman Air Force Base, St. Louis
139th Airlift Wing, St. Joseph
Headquarters and Headquarters Company, 35th Engineer Brigade, Fort Leonard Wood
175th Military Police Battalion, of Columbia
1140th Engineer Battalion, Cape Girardeau
1221st Transportation Company, of Dexter, Portageville and Sikeston
1140th Forward Support Company, Cape Girardeau
1138th Military Police Company, of West Plains and Springfield
1138th Engineer Company, of Farmington and Fredericktown
1175th Military Police Company, of St. Clair and St. Louis
880th Engineer Detachment, Perryville
220th Engineer Company, Festus
1438th Engineer Company, of Macon and Kirksville
70th Mobile Public Affairs Detachment of Jefferson City
Missouri Wing Civil Air Patrol
Joint Operations Center at Joint Force Headquarters in Jefferson City.