The Midwest is still trying to clean up after being hit by tornadoes and floods a few weeks ago.
An EF-5 tornado that ripped through Moore, Okla., left more than $2 billion in damage.
Days after the tornadoes came through, heavy rains brought flooding to many parts of the area, even causing massive sinkholes in a neighboring city.
The combination of floods and tornado damage is leaving residents and volunteers with months and months of clean-up and recovery.
More than two weeks have passed since that tornado devastated Moore, Okla., and yet mangled cars and miles of piles of debris still cover most of the city. It will take years for this community to return to normal, and cleaning up all this debris is only part of the battle.
Buried beneath all of this rubble, distant memories of happier times still softly play on repeat, but as residents in Moore work to salvage any happy memories at all, it's hard to picture when new ones will be made.
“I don't even know where to begin,” said one resident.
“We got a lot of stuff we’ve got to do,” said another resident.
“I have no idea,” said a volunteer. “As you can see, the devastation is massive.”
Throughout the past two weeks, the Coulee region has shown its kindness through donations in money, tools and hundreds of pounds of food.
“We'd hope that somebody would come to help us if we needed it,” said Brian Wellendorf, owner of Wellendorf Construction in La Crescent.
Wellendorf and a group of volunteers from the Coulee region drove a semi filled with donations down to Moore.
But with such a great need, the help will only make a small dent in the recovery.
“It's going to go to thousands of people,” said Tim Barbee, of Unsheltered International, an organization providing meals to people working to recover. “We'll probably go through this in three days.”
Millions of dollars from across the nation, including the Coulee region, are now spread thin throughout multiple Oklahoma communities devastated by tornadoes.
“It will take several years,” said Laurie DeFlorian, a Red Cross volunteer from Coon Valley. “This state has just been devastated by these awful storms and there are just so many people who need help.”
FEMA representatives said recovery in each community will be different.
“Each disaster has its own unique qualities,” said Rita Egan from FEMA. “So there's no clear-cut answers as to how long it will take.”
But picking up pieces of the past and cleaning up the mess is only part of the battle.
“They need spiritual help, emotional help,” said DeFlorian. “They're in shock. They're traumatized. They don't know where to go.”
And while some memories cannot be saved, the people here are confident they'll make new ones again because signs of hope are all around them.
“There's so many volunteers here from all over the country,” said one homeowner.
“Oh yeah, we'll make it,” said anotherhome owner.
“They've been through this before,” said a volunteer. “They'll get back to normal. It will just be a while.”