95 year old woman allowed back into her home after Isaac - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

95 year old woman allowed back into her home after Isaac

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Lille Sams moved back into her Pearlington home just in time for Christmas. Lille Sams moved back into her Pearlington home just in time for Christmas.
PEARLINGTON, MS (WLOX) -

Lille Sams's home is a place friends and family are always visiting. But that wasn't the case for months after Hurricane Isaac pushed three feet of water inside her house.

"I just put everything in God's hand and he took care of it," Sams said.

The 95-year-old credits her faith and her daughter, Orelia Marshall, for allowing her to move back in the place she has called home for more than 50 years.

"She worked, she ran, she called all time of the night, all time of the day, she's on that phone pleading trying to get my house back," Sams said.

"It was real important to my family to help Mom get back in her home," Marshall said. "And we did it as a family, as friends, as a community."

Supervisor David Yarborough fought tirelessly to find a solution.

"It's been a struggle on our part," Yarborough said. "We have to stay within the law no matter what we do, we have to stay within the FEMA guidelines, because if we go against FEMA in any kind of way, they can jerk the flood insurance for the entire county."

After much hard work and help from FEMA and MEMA, he was able to find a way to get Sams and nearly 50 others back in their homes.

"We were able to go back and actually change the ordinance," Yarborough said.

The flood ordinance used to be if your home receives a certain amount of damage within ten years, you must elevate to current standards. But the board agreed to change it to five years.

"It's been a blessing to be able to help some," Yarborough said.

While there are still a few final touches left to do to Sams's house, her family could not be happier to celebrate the holidays there.

"It's a tradition. We come to Mommas for everything," Marshall said.

"It's just wonderful, and I can't thank the Lord enough for letting me come back in my house," Sams said.

For those residents still unable to get a building permit, MEMA and the county supervisors are working on a buyout program they hope to begin at the first of the year.

Copyright 2012 WLOX. All rights reserved.

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