FARGO, N.D. (BP)–Southern Baptist Disaster Relief feeding teams from the Iowa and Minnesota/Wisconsin state conventions prepared some 5,000 hot meals in Fargo, N.D., in support of the American Red Cross and Salvation Army during the recent Red River flooding.
Some 175,000 metro residents of twin cities Fargo and Moorhead, Minn., were relieved when the Red River — which parts the two towns, flowing south to north — crested at nearly 41 feet, lower than the 43-foot level expected. The Red River has now receded to 37 feet, still 15 feet above flood stage. But after heavy recent snow, rains and warming temperatures, the river may crest again in mid-April, authorities say.
Late last week, the Iowa and Minnesota/Wisconsin feeding units were released to go home by Fred MacDonald, disaster relief director for the Dakotas. In addition, NAMB’s disaster operations center in Alpharetta, Ga., advised units on alert from Illinois, Kentucky, Missouri, Kansas/Nebraska, Tennessee and Utah/Idaho that they also could stand down.
Morgan Medford, associational missionary for the Dakota Northland Baptist Association, who lives in Moorhead, noted that because major flooding was averted, disaster relief mud-out work will be minimal in the Fargo/Moorhead area -– unless the second cresting causes serious flooding. In the smaller towns of Oxbow, Oakport and Hendrun, mud-out work will be necessary, he said.
“The sandbags and dikes are still in place in the Fargo/Moorhead area in case we have flooding when the second crest comes,” Medford said. Fargo’s mayor announced on March 31 that residents could return to their homes and reopen businesses.
Mickey Noah is a writer for the North American Mission Board.