Flood-displaced High River senior longs for home
Vincent Treadgold among hundreds of older residents struggling to get lives back to normal, Red Cross says
Ten months after flooding hit southern Alberta, many seniors are still struggling to get their lives back to normal.
The Canadian Red Cross says older clients represent about a quarter of its caseload in flood-affected communities.
Over the last 10 months, 91-year-old Vincent Treadgold has done a lot of packing and unpacking. Ever since losing his home in the flood, he's been living with family members in Calgary and High River.
"I have a home here. Other people are not so lucky,” he said.
Treadgold was living at the Medicine Tree Manor in High River when the flood hit.
But it could be two more years before it’s rebuilt. In the meantime, not having a permanent home is wearing on him, Treadgold said.
"You don't want to be beholden to your family all the time."
His son John Treadgold said it’s been an adjustment for everyone.
"It's been stressful at times, because, you know, it upsets your normal routine. But we adapt, make things work, that's what families are all about,” he said.
Hundreds of seniors need help
The Treadgolds aren't alone. The Red Cross is continuing to help several hundred seniors in Calgary and High River, said provincial director Jenn McManus.
"Seniors have had a lot of disruption to their lives. The predictability of their day-to-day has been disrupted. They're living with friends or family. They've had to find multiple locations to live, since being evacuated,” she said.
“They've also had unplanned financial stresses in their lives.”
John Treadgold hopes his father will have some options soon.
He received a letter recently from the Foothills Foundation — which operates the flooded-damaged Medicine Tree Manor — saying it’s working with the province to have 72 new temporary housing units in High River ready by the spring.
But the Treadgold's aren’t getting their hopes too high.
"Whether Dad is going to go there or not, we don't know. We're on the list to go take a look but that's all we can do for now."
Vincent Treadgold said he is used to waiting by now and is better off than most.