Boating home: Miller City surrounded by flood waters - WSIL-TV 3 Southern Illinois

Boating home: Miller City surrounded by flood waters

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ALEXANDER CO., Ill. -- Miller City is once again surrounded by flood waters. Since the Len Small Levee breached in 2016, hundreds of acres in the town flood several times a year. 

Monday, the gauge at Thebes showed water levels at moderate flood stage at nearly 38 feet. The Mississippi River is supposed to crest on Sunday at 40.5 feet. 

Alexander County Highway Department Engineer Jeff Denny explained, because of the massive gap in the Len Small Levee water pours in, washing out roads and flooding farmland. 

"It affects such a huge area. It takes out a state park, but then also, there are farmers 10 miles north of here that have water in their fields that wouldn't be there if this breach was fixed," said Denny. 

Sherry Pecord lives in Miller City and while everything around her home is underwater, her belongings are dry thanks to a homemade levee. 

News Three boated across fields filled with backwater from the river to meet Pecord. 

While her home is dry, her husbands farm land is under water and their business, just three miles away, is closed because water covers the roads that lead to it. 

"Our two sources of income are our restaurant and bar and farming so this gets us from all directions," said Pecord. 

When asked why she stays, despite having to boat to get to work or get groceries, she says its just too difficult to leave her home. 

"I don't want people sitting at home thinking 'they are idiots, why are they staying down there,' and I'm going to get emotional because this is day 13 and I'm tired. You can't just walk away from a house. Is anybody going to buy this? You can't sell it. You cant just go start fresh and new. It's not that easy," said Pecord. 

All she wants is for the mile-wide hole in the levee to be fixed. Now she is just waiting for the Army Corps of Engineers to make a move. 

"I am going to be that squeaky wheel down here in Miller City that just won't go away and maybe one of these days they'll get the big picture and do it," said Pecord. 

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