The aftermath of a flooded and mud-filled home »
Yucca Valley – Those whom read the heart-wrenching story in the Hi-Desert Star — Mud fills house three feet deep in storm – will understand the sheer terror the Wargo family suddenly encountered during the last flooding and hail storm. After just ” few minutes” of being pounded by torrential rain and unbelievable heavy hail, Krista and their daughter ran for cover in the protection of their home, homeowner Bob Wargo said.
At 1:30 p.m, Saturday, earlier this month, within a few minutes the unprecedented natural disaster blew out their bedroom window, next a four foot wall of rain-soaked mountain mud and boulders took out one side of their beautiful home. Bob said, “We only had 20-30 seconds to get out of the house. I didn’t think of what to grab. We just had enough time to get out.” Their home was filled with 3-4 feet of mud. “The doors would not open so I busted out a window to escape,” Bob explained.
The good news is that we all have to come together on the local level. And that is exactly what is happening in the aftermath.
Last Saturday 33 Marines from the (MCAGCC) 29 Palms - Marine Corps showed up and removed four feet of mud that had completely filled their hillside home. And mud removal is what these humanitarian Marines did. They completed the removal of most all the mud in the interior of the home.
Today the Yucca Valley Volunteer Improvement Team crew-leader and organizer, Leroy Trytten, cancelled the bi-monthly clean-up of picking up trash and debris from Yucca Valley streets and roadway. The crew drove south up Gage, then up to the hillside home of Bob and Krista Wargo to begin ripping out sinks and cabinets and removing mud filled appliances. Leroy pointed out the family piano.. it was filled with mud (image below).
Earlier a cat bulldozed a road and cleared out driveways as best as possible.
Bob Wargo wants to remodel their home. Wallboards must be removed and walls replaced. All the rooms are severely damaged. The entire kitchen will be required to be replaced. Bob said that he hasn’t had any official estimates thus far, but it’s going to be hugely costly and work intense.
Scot McKone, a local carpenter, writer and actor believes it may cost the Wargo family from $50,000 to a $100,000 to rebuild, remodel and replace.
As Karma would have it, the family’s pets, two dogs and three cats, escaped from the wreckage unscathed. “They were floating on the bed,” said Bob.
As far as flood insurance is concerned, their State Farm homeowners insurance will not cover the damages. However, Bob is consulting with an attorney to explore his options.
The damages resulted from the wildfire up in those hills a few years back. Numerous long-time residents of Yucca Valley said they have never seen a natural disaster such as this in this local semi-mountainous area. “The rain (including heavy hail) lasted about 30 minutes,” Bob explained.
Donations of about $10,000 have been received by the Wargo family thus far.
Coming together locally as a Morongo Basin of community is what makes a community of caring people. This is what it is all about. Those Marines, The local Volunteer Improvement Team members and their leader Leroy Trytten, those whom made generous monetary donations, and the other volunteer people that are cleaning-up are the unsung heros.
The Wargo family are temporary staying in their rental cabin. Bless them, their dogs and three cats.
Lastly, Bob explained that FEMA has a program to help owners with low-cost insurance.
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