79-Year-Old Flood Victim Waits to Get New Home: "As far as I'm concerned, I'm homeless"

Thousands of homes were destroyed in the 2015 flood. Disaster recovery groups have helped folks get back on their feet. However one Clarendon man got lost in the shuffle.

Alcolu, SC (WLTX) - A storage pod now sits on the plot of land where James Singleton's mobile home once stood. Singleton's home in Clarendon County was destroyed during the October 2015 flood.

Since then, he has worked with the South Carolina Disaster Recovery Office to get it repaired. Even signing an agreement with contractors in August of this years, allowing them to replace his home.
 
"They came and tore it down," says Singleton. The agreement gave a 30-day time frame from when his home would be rebuilt.
 
"Somebody called me and told me that you should have your trailer by the end of the month," says Singleton. "This was going on ever since September."

It's been three months and he has yet to receive a new home.
   
"I was living with someone," says Singleton. "I kept telling them that I was going to get a trailer. They had family coming, so I had to get out. So now, as far as I'm concerned, I'm homeless."

The 79-year-old reached out us at News 19 for help. We called the South Carolina Disaster Recovery Office for answers.
 
"We had hurricanes both in Florida and in Texas and as a result of those two hurricanes, there's been a shortage in some of our suppliers," says J.R. Sanderson, program manger.

Sanderson says that since the October 2015 flood, they have repaired and built 772 homes throughout the state. However, some mistakes can happen.
  
"Sometimes citizens drop through the cracks, it happens," says Sanderson. "We make mistakes, they make mistakes. We have communication errors and when those miscommunication errors happen, it's our mission to dive on top of this and get that citizen back into a home as quickly and as efficiently as we possibly can."

After we notified them of Singleton's situation, the disaster recovery office contacted him, letting him know that another contractor would be working on his home. However, it could take another 60 days before his home is rebuilt.

Until then his plot of land and belongings in his storage unit are all he has.

"I wouldn't have got involved if I knew I would have to go through all this."

The South Carolina Disaster Recovery Office says they have a permit to build his home, all they need now are new contracts for the mobile home replacement.
 

© 2018 WLTX-TV


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