MEMPHIS, TN (abc24.com) - It has been one year since the historic Mississippi River flood. On May 10, 2011, the river crested at 48 feet in Memphis, more than 14 feet above flood stage.
It was the largest and most damaging flood this century. Flood victims near Millington are still recovering.
Last year, flood waters claimed much of Old Millington Road near North Watkins and Highway 51. Hundreds of families were displaced due to the flood and most never returned. Richard and Marie Arendale have lived in the area for 14 years and decided that abandoning their flooded home wasn't an option.
"We're all that's left in this whole neighborhood of thousands of families. My neighbors went off and gave me their house. They just left their home and gave it to me," Richard said.
For four months the Arendales lived in a nearby trailer waiting for waters to recede so they could renovate their home. Down the street mobile homes sit empty, rotting away. Rats live there now.
"I've completely redone the inside of the house. So, that's a good thing. The wiring, air, plumbing, flooring, walls, everything," says Richard. "A year is not a whole lot of time. So, I feel like we've really done good because it destroyed everything."
Richard and his wife, Marie, were able to save a tree in their front yard that was given to them as a gift. It currently sits in a pot, waiting to be planted. They say it's a symbol of how they are moving forward.