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September 24, 2011 09:50 PM

Volunteers Clean Up Sandbags In Yankton

yankton, sd

Yankton resident Rebecca Schieffer takes a walk around her backyard, now covered in mud, where water from the Missouri River sat most of the summer.

"The river is normally beyond those trees," Schieffer said.

But if it wasn't for all the volunteers who helped her and her family stack sandbags in the back of her property, the water would've been sitting in her home.

"Just the help building this restored my faith in humanity, I had no idea people could come out and just give up a beautiful day to work like dogs," Schieffer said.

And now, thanks to National Public Lands Day, officials with the National Park Service were in town Saturday, making sure sandbags are disposed properly.

"To have people come out again to help us take it down it's wonderful," Schieffer said.

Gia Wagner with the National Park Service helps Schieffer Saturday, deconstructing the barricade that saved the family's home.

"Bill and I came out here today and we know this was a need here in the parks so we came out to help folks," National Park Service Official Gia Wagner said. 

And Wagner says that this land along the Missouri River is actually part of the Missouri National Recreational River and that's why the National Park Service is out helping take down the sandbags in order to save the wildlife in the river.

"It can get caught obviously on fish and birds, other wildlife that use the river, it can choke them, can clog up their digestive systems," Wagner said.

But even with the sandbags coming down, Schieffer says her family doesn't plan to move back in anytime soon.

"We don't know, maybe spring, if we can get things kind of back to normal," Schieffer said.

And while spring may be months away, the remnants of summer are starting to fade into past.


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