East Texas woman gets new home following 2016 flooding

Uncertain, Texas (KTAL) - Thirteen months after the March of 2016 flood, slow and steady rebuilding progress continues.

The Caddo Lake Recovery Center has been trying to find funding for Martina Cervantes to receive a new home. 

Martina's home was flooded with 8 feet of water when the lake rose over its banks and into her home on Sesame St. Cervantes purchased an RV home as a temporary shelter and placed it on her property, but it lacked heat and the space needed to move around. Cervantes was also diagnosed with cancer and began chemotherapy and radiation, putting a new home outside of her budget. 

Responding to pleas for help from the Recovery Center, local businesses have cut deals to sell a pre-fabricated home and materials at or below cost. This morning a new home was placed on Cervantes' land, and work began to raise it nearly 15 feet to meet flood standards. 

"It's just a day of celebration, a day of blessings that the house is here," says Deb Bates, Coordinator of Caddo Lake Recovery.

Bates still wants to raise several thousand dollars to purchase a bathtub for the home, and an elevator lift so Martina can reach the raised building. She is still undergoing treatments for cancer, but her health prognosis is good. 

"I know with her chemotherapy and radiation she can't lift for 18 months and so we're trying to get that elevator in so she's not having to walk all the way up that ramp," says Bates. 

Bates says three families remain in need of housing. 

If you want to make a donation or know of any businesses that can help with materials, donations can be made at First United Methodist Church at 300 E. Houston St. in Marshall, Texas, 75670 or mailed to Caddo Lake Recovery at  P.O. Box 444 in Karnack, TX, 75661.

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