Flooding issues prompt one North Mississippi family to evacuate

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NOXUBEE COUNTY, Miss. (WCBI) – When William Whitehead first built his home on Ridge Street in 1967, he never envisioned the Noxubee River invading his backyard.

When he looked outside Tuesday morning, that’s exactly what he and his wife witnessed.

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The Noxubee River turned their backyard into a lake.

As the floodwaters moved in, Whitehead knew it was time to move out.

“We actually talked about it last night and we got up this morning and saw it, we started packing then,” Whitehead recalled. “I’ve learned that you’re not going to be able to play with flooding water, it’s going to come no matter what you do.”

Whitehead and his wife, along with several volunteers, boxed up everything in the home and loaded it onto multiple trailers outside his house.

“It’s been hectic,” the Noxubee County man expressed. “It’s like organized chaos, I’ve been grabbing boxes and packing boxes. I got my wife in here, she went and got boxes and  helped pack. My wife is in the back finishing packing up the bedroom fixing to get it out.”

For Whitehead, heavy rains have always been problematic for his home.

This marked the second time his family has evacuated.

In 1979, the Noxubee River forced Whitehead and his family out of their home, leaving them with nowhere to go.

“I built this house in 1967, and so I did not know about the flooding at that time,” said Whitehead. “There was nothing I could do about it then, but we have another house and so we at least have a place to go.”

Once everything was moved out, the longtime Noxubee County resident said he and his wife will move into their new house and sell the home they’re leaving.

“We will spend the night down there tonight,” he said. “We’ve got a few clothes. I just now realized I don’t know where my clothes are, which trailer they’re in, but will find it tomorrow.”

Whitehead wasn’t the only resident concerned with the flooding.

Bertha Conner has lived in the neighborhood for three decades and has also packed up items in case flood waters forced her out of her home.

“I’m just taking all of the precautionary measures that I can because this river can rise, and all around town it’s up, so I’m just trying to get a few things and leave before the water gets up,” said Conner.

With more rain in the forecast, Whitehead expected the inside of his house to be flooded by Wednesday.

Volunteers with the Macon Fire Department and Calvary Baptist Church helped Whitehead and his family moved out of their home.