Floods Damage Region 8 School, Destroy Gym Floor

September 28, 2006 - Posted at 5:27 p.m. CDT

NEELYVILLE, MO -- Last Friday's severe weather caused chaos all over Region 8.  Butler County residents saw torrential downpours and flash flooding and reports in the Neelyville area of up to 12 inches of water.  So much water, it flooded the school.  Administrator went to work Saturday trying to dry up an estimated 2-3 inches of water from the high school gymnasium.

What was once the jewel of the Neelyville School District is now no more then a pile of sticks.

"We have a lot of memories on this floor and now it's all gone and it's kind of depressing," said junior Libby Parish.

With cheerleading practice now in the cafeteria and circular saws in the gym, the school is adjusting to the temporary change.

"We are not going to be able to play any of the junior high games here until the floor is fixed.  It's possible we may not get to play any junior high games in our gymnasium," said Junior High and High School Principal Brad Hagood, "The high school practice doesn't officially start until after November and we're hoping and think that everything will be ready to go at that time."

"We were most concerned about our first game because it's going to be at home and ever since we were freshman we knew it was going to be at home and that's what we wanted it to be this year and now we were afraid that it was going to be away," said senior basketball player Megan Beaird.

Fortunately the school district's insurance will cover the cost of replacing the floor, but for the students who have played their entire basketball careers on the hardwood, they are only left with the priceless memories.

Senior Joshua Miller commented, "My grandpa came here, my grandma came here.  My mom and dad came here.  They've all been cheerleaders and basketball players and I just want to keep that family tradition going."

But for the sentimental...the hard wood won't go to waste.

"I've got a section I'm going to take, it was probably my sweet spot in high school, so that's what I'm going to take with me," smiled Girl's Basketball Coach Becky Hale,  "Yea, it's kind of sad, but we'll be getting a new floor and hopefully it will start a new era and everything else."

The high school's agriculture building also sustained damage.  Several inches of water flooded the building, causing an estimated $15,000-20,000 worth of damage.  Classes were temporarily relocated, but the building is now back in use.