There are many throughout North Carolina rebuilding after Florence ravaged large parts of the state - showing their unity and willingness to come together in the face of tragedy. In Wayne County on Tuesday, a father and daughter explained how incredible their community really was.
"We've just watched the water rise," said father Arron Braggs. "There is nothing you can do about it. You just have to make light of it as much as you can."
The storm hit hard on Friday, but its aftermath will continue for weeks and weeks until the flood waters recede. It's a depressing scene that Braggs said he wished he didn't know so well.
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"Two years ago, we went through it with Matthew," he said. "Six months later, we went through it again." He added that rebuilding was grueling.
It took he and his daughter's boyfriend 37 days to remodel the house.
"They worked really hard to get us into that house before school started," said Shelby Braggs, his daughter. "And they got us in the weekend before I started school and they worked really hard and I know a lot of it was for me. So, I had somewhere to study and I could be comfortable."
As he fights back years of defeat, his daughter is there for him to share his pain. She said she remembered walking into her bedroom after the storm.
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"When we went the first time - with Matthew - it was really hard to see because I had never seen anything like that before, but going in for the second time, it was like that again."
"A man works all of his life and puts a few dollars away and the water comes and takes every penny of it," Arron Braggs explained. "Pretty bad..."
They have to decide what's next for the third time.
"The waters got my front porch floating," he continued. "There is probably six to seven inches of water in the house. We just put $3,200 of hardwood floor in the house and now it's floating, air conditioning unit is all but under water - everything in my barn is destroyed."
Anything left in the home three-quarters of a mile downstream is now swamped. It was experience that taught the Braggs to prepare for this.
"I kind of knew this was coming and even though we got homeowner and flood insurance, we still took all the furniture out of the house," Arron Braggs said.
They stored their furniture with friends and at their local church. Some decisions ahead of a storm are tough but necessary.
"I love this area - it's a wonderful community," Shelby Braggs said. "Everyone comes together and its nice to be here, but I don't want to go through this anymore."
Arron Braggs told WFMY News 2 that after the cleanup, the family is going to find some place else to live - somewhere with higher ground. He said they are not going to go through this every two years. And as they look to the future, they said their faith is bigger than their fear.
"I've always said with Matthew it built my faith in God because I saw us get through it and I know we'll get through this," Shelby Braggs said. "It's hard to imagine what will happen in the next couple of months."
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