Dozens of Bellevue kids who had been displaced by March flooding got some free back-to-school supplies courtesy of their local rotary club.
The Bellevue Papillion Rotary Club provided $125 each to 56 kids from 30 families to shop Saturday at the Target at Twin Creek Plaza.
Many of the recipients lost everything in the flood — no clothes, no toys. Some people cried when they were told that they would get $125 of tax-free shopping.
“After 40 years in this community doing projects, this may be our best one ever,” said former Rotary President Colm Breathnach.
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School has already started, which means that most kids already had the basics, like backpacks and markers.
So kids got to pick out new clothes or other staples.
Nine-year-old Gavin Clapper said he’s had his eye on a Minecraft jacket.
His mom, Michelle Clapper, said he was glad to be able to get some fall and winter clothes.
Gavin’s 3-year-old sister, Paige, was too young for the program but was excited to check out the Hatchimals at Target.
The Clappers lived in Paradise Lakes, the flooded subdivision so heavily damaged that all 195 homes will need to be demolished.
So did mom Tabitha Valencia, who was there with her seventh and eighth graders.
They were excited about new pants.
Up until now, Valencia has been shopping at Goodwill and said Dragon’s Closet in Gretna has been helpful.
“Obviously, it’s been a very trying time for them,” Rotary President Heather Chaney said. “And back to school is expensive.”
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The Elkhorn River at the Maple Street bridge is shown under water Monday March 18, 2019.
Floodwaters from the Elkhorn River have gone down and now expose a heavily damaged West Dodge Road.
Floodwaters from the Elkhorn River have started to recede, exposing a heavily damaged West Dodge Road.
The eastbound lanes of West Dodge Road just west of 228th Street show the damage done after floodwaters went down Monday.
A cow makes its way through floodwaters near Columbus, Nebraska, on Friday.
A shell of the Spencer dam is left on the Niobrara River.
Floodwaters engulf a farm near Missouri Valley on Friday.
Floodwaters flow over a railroad bridge near Arlington, Nebraska, on Friday.
Floodwaters make their way into North Bend, Nebraska, on Friday.
The Elkhorn River encroaches on Waterloo on Sunday.
A portion of Highway 92 has been destroyed by floodwaters in western Douglas County.
The Elkhorn River has covered several parts of western Douglas County.
A levee breach is shown on the Platte River near Ashland on Sunday.
Valley is shown inundated by floodwaters on Sunday.
An aerial view of Missouri Valley near the Interstate 29 exit on March 15.
An aerial view of Missouri Valley as floodwaters continue to impact the area on Friday.
A house is surrounded by floodwaters near Waterloo, Nebraska, on Friday.
Floodwaters envelop King Lake, Nebraska, on Friday.
Floodwaters swallow the town of Rogers, Nebraska, on Friday.
Water recedes in the town of Niobrara NE., on Friday March 15, 2019. The highway showing is Hwy 12 and Hwy 14 Junction.
The Morman bridge on Highway 12 between Niobrara and Niobrara State Park was wiped out by a flood.
A train is stopped on flooded tracks next to the Platte River near Cedar Creek, Nebraska, on Friday.
Interstate 29 surrounded by water near exit 56 in Council Bluffs, which is part of a section that is closed due to flooding on Friday.
Highway 75's northbound lane is closed because of flooding near Merritt's Beach RV Park on Friday.
A Nebraska National Guard helicopter flies over areas flooded by the Platte River near Columbus, Nebraska, on Friday.
Highway 81 covered in floodwaters south of Columbus, Nebraska, on Friday.
A Nebraska National Guard helicopter flies over flooded Waterloo on Friday.
Cars drive drive across a flooded Platte River on Highway 50 just north of Louisville on Friday, March 15, 2019. CHRIS MACHIAN/THE WORLD-HERALD
Water covers a road near Valley, Nebraska on Friday, March 15, 2019. CHRIS MACHIAN/THE WORLD-HERALD
A westward, aerial view of a flooded Tom Hanafan River's Edge Park on Friday.
An aerial view of Missouri Valley, Iowa, as floodwaters continue to impact the area on Friday.
The National Weather Service in Valley, Nebraska was evacuated due to flooding on Friday, March 15, 2019. CHRIS MACHIAN/THE WORLD-HERALD
A truck drives through a flooded road near the Platte River on Friday.