West Virginia flood recovery: Before and after

“Not only are we making the homes better, but the volunteers will gain a sense of accomplishment. That’s my goal.” — Buck Edwards, construction coordinator for the West Virginia Conference. 

On June 23, 2016, 8 to 10 inches of rain fell in a 12-hour period in West Virgina. The resulting flash flood led to 23 deaths and destroyed 5,000 homes.

Just over a year later, The United Methodist Church is still helping rebuild homes and lives.

These images, taken right after the storm and one year later, show the progress of recovery. Grab the white toggle bar with your mouse and drag it back and forth to reveal more or less of the photos.

The kitchen at Clendenin (W. Va.) United Methodist Church was ruined by flooding in June 2016 (left side image). The partially rebuilt kitchen is used by volunteer teams hosted by the church in July 2017 (right side image). Photo by Mike DuBose, UMNS.

The Rev. J.F. Lacaria (right) visits with highway contractors at Brawley Chapel United Methodist Church near Clendenin, W. Va., in June 2016. The church's parking lot and much of its foundation were swept away by floodwaters from the Elk River (left side image). Lacaria points out where the church, which was not able to be saved, once stood in July 2017. Photo by Mike DuBose, UMNS.

Debris from the ruined basement is piled outside Fenwick (W. Va.) United Methodist Church after the nearby Cherry River flooded in June 2016 (left side image). The Rev. Judy Pysell walks through the church yard in July 2017 (right side image). Photo by Mike DuBose, UMNS.

Read related story, The church is still with West Virginia

Mike DuBose is staff photographer for United Methodist News Service. News media contact: Vicki Brown, Nashville, Tennessee, 615-742-5470 or newsdesk@umcom.org.

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