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Shawnee High School students make pleas to IEMA

WOLF LAKE (WSIL) — The juniors and seniors at Shawnee High School are writing letters to the director of the Illinois Emergency Management Agency (IEMA) asking for funds to help prevent flooding in the future. 

Jasmine Graham says she’s going to put pen to paper to pour her feelings out, "If you handwrite your letter, it’s more personal."

She says many of the students and their families are still dealing with the flood’s aftermath, "It didn’t just stop at people moving out of their houses like people got really sick from all the mold and all the sandbags that were there."

And she’s still dealing with the repercussions, "Over the summer I had gotten a job and I had to quit my job to come and volunteer because I couldn’t get from McClure to Cape. It is still affecting me today."

TJ Landers had to relocate 3 times because of flooding, "It was just go, go, go, and make sure everyone is getting out of their houses and try to get everything out of their houses packed up real quick."

He says 2019’s flooding was the worst flooding he experienced. So he wants to write a very detail letter.

Landers explains, "The people that didn’t actually witness the flood, they can actually probably read these letters and actually feel like, ‘Hey it feels like I was there’, but they weren’t."

Jamie Nash-Mayberry says she doesn’t want anyone to go through the hardship again, "We’re hoping the letters make a difference that’s someone will answer their please for help because honestly time is running out. And the truth is for those who don’t live in the flood plain who were inconvenienced by say the Cape bridge closing we hope they join our fight they need to write letters, too."

And students like Graham and Launders just want clean and safe future ahead of them.

Landers adds, "I just don’t want to have to go through a flood again. I don’t want to see my mom go through it either." 

The students’ letters are expected to be completed and sent out by the end of next week.

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