TAMPA, Fla. — It’s been nearly three months since hurricane Idalia hit communities across the state. leaving many homeowners to deal with the devastating cleanup after one of those communities was near the Alafia River.

What You Need To Know

  •  Communities near the Alafia River are recalling the impact of Hurricane Idalia
  •  Hurricane Idalia hit Florida towards the end of August
  •  Michelle Riggs says she’s had to replace a lot of things due to the Hurricane.

Sitting near the water with her grandkids are moments Michelle Riggs treasures.

“It’s just gorgeous, and it’s peaceful. Yeah, it’s my heaven. I love being on the boat, I love being on the water,” she said.

It’s days like today that make her grateful for her home and the beautiful view she has in her backyard.

And it’s moments like these that make the not so good ones go away.

“It was a little frightening to see it rise up, and wondering if actually we were going to get out of the neighborhood or not, and how much damage it was going to do,” she said about the rising water.

That’s how Riggs describes the night Hurricane Idalia hit her home. Photos and videos she provided to us show the flooding inside and outside.

In her three years of living near the Alafia River, Riggs says this one caused the most damage to her property.

“I got some furniture I had to throw out, but our lives are good. Nobody got hurt, lost some appliances. It’s costly, but it’s all replaceable stuff,” she said.

Riggs said other parts of her property were also damaged by the flooding. But thanks to the help of her neighbors, they’ve been able to put the pieces back together.

Although for now things are looking better, Riggs says she’s already thinking ahead.

“We’re coming up with ideas for the future, like building things so the refrigerator can sit up on. It may not be the prettiest, but it’s better than losing a $2,300 refrigerator,” she said.

As she gathers with her family, she says being by the Alafia river is her home and she wouldn’t want it any other way.