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Foundation Helps CU Employee/Member with Disaster Expenses
Thursday, July 9, 2015 6:55 AM

Red River Disaster
County Road 2304, when the Loftins had to be evacuated on May 27, 2015.

Melanie Loftin, a four-year employee of Red River Employees Federal Credit Union, and her husband Troy were displaced from their home in Texarkana, Texas, when the recent spring flood waters rose to record levels and nearly destroyed the home they had lived in for ten years.

Even though the Loftin's home was built five feet off the ground because of the potential for the nearby Red River to overflow, the enormity of the 2015 floods and follow-up floods made returning to the home impossible. As if that wasn't bad enough, the Red River area has continued to be hit by subsequent floods, and the road to the Loftin's home has since been sand-bagged and closed.

Red River Disaster
Ten inches of water in the Loftin home, including sewer backup in bath tubs on June 1, 2015.

At the time of this article, the Loftins had yet to receive FEMA help. The area has been declared a disaster and slated to receive public assistance from FEMA, which helps rebuild bridges and roads; but private assistance has not been declared, which would cover residential assistance.

The Loftin's entire home, from the floor to about four feet up, will have to be gutted and replaced. The Loftins were allowed into their home when the insurance adjuster came review the damages. They had flood coverage in addition to home insurance, but replacements will consist of outside brick, inside flooring, wood, wiring, insulation, etc. The repairs will take an estimated three months.

Red River Disaster
View of the Loftin home from a boat. The homeowners had to boat to the property through five feet of water in the yard.

The Loftins have been living with relatives; and it is still not known whether insurance will assist with their long-term displaced living expenses. Out-of-pocket expenses continue to pile up while they remain displaced. In an effort to help, the Cornerstone Credit Union Foundation has provided a Phase 1 Emergency Disaster Relief grant to the Loftins to help mitigate the burden. Per the Foundation’s disaster relief process, staff will follow up with the Loftins in approximately 90 days to assess the need for a Phase II grant. 

"Your Foundation and our insurance claim have been our only financial support," Melanie Loftin said. "It may be another month or two before we can move back home again. Thanks for your help! It has been a blessing in our time of need."

Red River Disaster
Picture of the parked boat at front door of the flooded Loftin home.

Cornerstone Credit Union Foundation Executive Director Courtney Moran said, "The Loftins have been through a devastating event, and it's hard to encapsulate the loss they must feel, which is far more than monetary. But we do understand the toll a tragedy of this magnitude can have on families, so we are gratified to help in a way that is meaningful and relieves some of the stress from their shoulders."