Rising Above - DatelineCarolina

Rising Above

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The waters flooded the whole first floor of the Guignard's Lake Katherine home. The waters flooded the whole first floor of the Guignard's Lake Katherine home.
Guignard says the flood "really hit us pretty hard. The whole thing has really turned our lives upside down." Guignard says the flood "really hit us pretty hard. The whole thing has really turned our lives upside down."

By Kevin Smarr
South Carolina was hit by a thousand year flood last fall. Many Columbia homeowners are still trying to recover from the historic flooding. Bruce Guignard's home on Lake Katherine was under more than nine feet of water after the Gills Creek dam broke.

"I think everybody wishes it never happened. But it did," says Guignard.

Guignard's wife was the only one home and had to climb out of the second story window to escape. She says she was rescued by angels when she was picked up by a neighbor with their pontoon boat.

Guignard says the flood turned his life upside down.

"It really hit us pretty hard," he said.

The Guignards have moved into a rental house a mile and a half from their home on Lake Katherine. Guignard is now rebuilding and raising their lake house 10 feet to ensure that their home is safe from future flooding. 

"We love the neighborhood. We love the sight. The view is just beautiful and the location is outstanding so we decided to stay," says Guignard.

It's costing $350,000 to rebuild and raise the house and about $100,000 of that is coming out of Guignard's pocket.

Construction crews are raising the home 14 inches at a time.

Guignard and his family plan to move back into their 10 foot higher home before Christmas of 2017. He says the view of the lake from 10 feet higher will make the construction, time and money all worth it. They look forward to calling Lake Katherine their backyard once again.

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