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Manitou Flooding Victims: Lessons Learned Are Painful, Valuable

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(credit: CBS)

(credit: CBS)

MANITOU SPRINGS, Colo. (CBS4)- People living in Manitou Springs believe the lessons they learned from recent flooding were valuable but painful.

That advice may be beneficial to flood victims in Northern Colorado.

Sandbags continue to line the streets of Main Street in Manitou Springs weeks after devastating flooding tore through the tourist district of the small town west of Colorado Springs.

“We’re still in the throws of it,” said business owner Safron Neusanger.

A flash flood ripped through Manitou Springs, destroying businesses, homes and lives.

“This was two-and-a-half feet of mud and water was at this level here,” said flood victim and building owner Hannah Rockey.

Rockey and her friends were cleaning the basement of her family’s building on the banks of the creek more than a month after those flood waters rushed through.

“So you can survive and make it through but it takes a community,” said Rockey.

She said many times in the past six weeks she wanted to quit but friends and volunteers pulled her through.

“Nobody can survive what happened alone. But a community can survive it,” said Rockey.

Jeff Contat lives in Manitou Springs. He’s learned it’s a mistake to rely solely on the government to bail you out.

“Nobody knows what’s going on when this stuff happens. It’s overwhelming, nobody knows who is in control,” said Contat.

He said friends and neighbors and others who pitched in made all the difference, “It was the community spirit, the volunteers.”

Around the corner Neusanger’s clothing store was devastated but is now back in business.

She said you’ll find that it is those closes to you who are the ones who step up.

“I mean my neighbors, everyone just grabbed a snow shovel and came down,” said Neusanger.

She said the government can’t move as quickly or do as much as neighbors, “People I don’t even know were doing all this.”

Colorado Floods: How To Help

The recent floods are impacting families and communities throughout Colorado, so CBS4 has compiled a list of ways you can support the local communities impacted by the floods.

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