One of the worst hit areas of regional flooding was Lewis County, and now that the floodwaters have receded, homeowners are getting a closer look at the damage and debris left behind.
Communities across Lewis County began cleaning up from disastrous flooding. High waters from the Chehalis River receded and people are getting closer look at just how bad the damages are.
Lewis County Gospel Mission is one place hit the hardest by the flooding; about three and a half feet of water spilled into the building. Tricia Ziese, executive director, said the location is prone to flooding, and their building typically only sees no more than a couple inches of water when there is a flood.
"Splashed in here and just saw the devastation. It looked like an earthquake more than a flood. We had full, stocked-up freezers and equipment laying on [their] side, we saw stuff floating from the kitchen all the way into the bathroom," said Ziese. 
Several community members spent Monday looking for items to salvage and threw away the rest. Ziese said the mission lost about 90% of its food supply during the flood. She also said early damage assessments indicate most major appliances might be ruined, including a new $5,000 commercial dishwasher.
"Our commercial stove, the loss of six freezers, multiple refrigerators. On our office area, we lost all of our computers, telephones, printer—pretty much any piece of equipment might be gone," said Ziese.
Despite the large mess the flooding caused, the mission continued doing outreach with the homeless community.
"Even though we don’t have a fully functioning building, we salvaged what we could. We have volunteers making sack lunches at home and then just bringing them here. We’re still feeding people, still getting them cold weather supplies," said Ziese. "So many people have lost everything. A lot of our friends were camped down by the water, and literally, they had no idea—they woke up to floodwaters."
Robert Tucker found shelter at the Southwest Washington Fairgrounds where the American Red Cross set up a disaster relief location. Tucker said he was living in a tent near the river when the floodwaters rushed in. 
"I woke up to everything I have was floating in a circle inside my tent. It was kind of insane," said Tucker. "All of that is ruined. Everything is gone."
Tucker said he arrived at the shelter with only the clothes on his back and boots on his feet. He is working with the Red Cross to help him get connected to resources. Tucker said he also hopes to contact a welfare agent for assistance receiving services.
On Monday, 22 people stayed overnight with the Red Cross. The Salvation Army is helping the Red Cross by supplying food. So far, the organization has served more than 900 meals to people across Lewis and Thurston counties impacted by the flood.
People have been asking how they can help the gospel mission recover from the destructive flood. Ziese said currently they can only accept monetary donations, since staff and volunteers are still trying to clean and sanitize the building. She said they hope to welcome food, clothing and other donations starting next week.
"You see all the people here that are helping us, and I’m more encouraged than discouraged. So I’m looking forward to how we rebuild and praying for big things for us," said Ziese.
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