The North Bend Eagle


Year of change, displacement followed March '19 flood

by Mary Le Arneal
Published 3/25/20

At 82 Georgia Vyhlidal thought she was set for life in her home on Willow Street, where she had lived in for 64 years. It was cozy, convenient and close to family. She was set.

But then a year ago water came into her house, a house sitting six inches below the street level, and everything changed.

Flood anniversaryGeorgia Vlyidahl has a new display case for her collectables after the original one was lost in the flood. Her home was knocked off its foundation by the water.

As the water entered North Bend on March 15, 2019, Vyhlidal saw it coming. Grandson Broc Vyhlidal came to her door, encouraging her to leave. She resisted. Son Doug and wife Shelly soon appeared and insisted she leave. She took her medications and left. No clothes, nothing else.

She went to Broc’s house on East Eighth Street where water came up to the sidewalk but didn’t reach the house.

On Sunday Shelly came by and told her to put some boots on and they would go see her house. This was the last time she saw her home. It had filled with water and the house had been pushed off its foundation.

“After I saw it, I knew it wasn’t fixable,” Georgia said.

The Vyhlidals all went to Doug and Shelly’s house and had a family meeting.

On Monday they started moving things out.

“There were so many wonderful people who came and helped get things out of there,” Georgia said. “We stored stuff to save in Doug’s shed. (Volunteers) had to decide what to throw away.”

Then the house was torn down. Georgia bought two lots in North Bend with plans to move in a pre-fabricated house.

“I didn’t even consider moving to Fremont,” Georgia said. “After living in North Bend 60-some years, I’m not going to move.”

First they told her it would be early fall to get a house. Then they called son Gary and told him it would be March or April before they could get her a home.

“That would be a year!” Georgia said. She started looking for a house. Grandson Broc was a gracious host all these months, but she wanted her own place.

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