Picayune resident on floodwaters: "This is really unbelievable"

PICAYUNE, MS (WLOX) - Residents in the Westchester subdivision in Picayune say they were caught off guard by floodwaters from the nearby Boley Creek.

The waters engulfed homes, cars, trucks, and a even local church in the area.

House Speaker Phillip Gunn and District 108 Rep. Mark Formby toured the neighborhood.

"The lives of these people have been uprooted," Gunn said. "I heard many of them say they didn't have flood insurance. They didn't have an reason to expect it. There's water in places here that never occurred in 1969 with Camille or 1979 with the Great Flood or even seven years ago with Katrina."

The floodwaters were getting closer to Logan's One Stop off Highway 43, which served as a loading off point for those who were rescued. With the help of the National Guard, local firemen, and policemen, three National Guard trucks were being used to navigate into the neighborhood where officials say floodwaters rose up to 13 feet in some areas.

"We've watched water rise in this neighborhood several times in twenty years, and it just never risen to this level," said resident Mark Formby.

Boley Creek is about 150 yards from the subdivision. Some blocks in Westchester were still dry, and those homeowners decided to wait it out in hopes the floodwaters would stop before it got to their homes.

Jack Donnelly and his wife packed what they could and climbed onto one of the National Guard trucks. He and his wife did not have flood insurance.

"Lost about everything we own here as far as personal belongings and furniture, so it's just hard to explain at this point," Donnelly said.

Larry Smith and his wife have lived in the neighborhood for 27 years.

"In our subdivision, only about eight houses have ever flooded," Smith said, "and this is really unbelievable."

Hundreds of residents in Picayune are being displaced, but state, federal, and local officials are doing everything they can to make sure residents have a safe place to go.

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