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Hidden Valley residents face enormous loss after community wiped out

CALGARY- Residents in the resort area of Hidden Valley are getting a heartbreaking look at what’s left of their homes, after the area was ravaged by flood waters.

Virtually every cabin has been destroyed, and some were even washed away in the Bow River with only the cement blocks of a foundation left behind.

About 30 of them are home to full-time residents, who have lost everything.

“Your eyes take it in, but your brain has a tough, tough time,” says homeowner Judy Mcleod, while surveying the devastation. “But you have to. That’s what it is. There’s 305 of us in this position, there’s 50 years here and history is gone.

“I get up in the morning and sometime I feel like I’ve never been here, because everything is gone.”

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While Mcleod’s cabin still stands, everything inside was swallowed up in the sinking mud. Many houses are now crushed up against each other, and residents know that their beloved resort will never be the same.

“Thank God you’ll have the memories,” Mcleod says. “Maybe it’s better to have loved and lost, than to have never loved at all.”

The nearby Siksika First Nation is also in the midst of rebuilding, and volunteers are still working to gut basements.

The state of emergency has been lifted in the area, but many displaced residents are living in tents and trailers until their homes can be rebuilt.

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