The devastation caused by the floods in Tennessee and Mississippi have wreaked havoc on the region with rising death tolls, closed roads and businesses, and stranded residents. The poorest in the region may be the hardest hit by the rising waters and damage.
Homeless in the area once erected their tents along the banks of the Cumberland River, which swelled to record levels over the two days of torrential rain. The tent city was abandoned as the waters continued to rise leaving the homeless inhabitants without a place to stay once again.
As the focus is made on the country music symbols in the state such as the Grand Ole Opry and the Country Music Hall of Fame, thousands of poor families worry about restoring their living conditions. Much of the attention has been paid to the country music industry in the state and the poorer residents worry that their plight will be overshadowed by the attention paid to the Grand Ole Opry and the Country Music Hall of Fame.
The flood was caused by over a foot of rain delivered to the region in a two day span. The flood was quick and caught many residents off guard and unprepared. As the floodwaters rushed into homes, many were forced to evacuate with nothing more than the clothes on their backs. They left behind their flooded homes in canoes and boats. Both wealthy and poor residents faced the same floodwaters, but it is the poorer that will find it most difficult to recover. Cleanup efforts in Nashville were underway, with some estimates expecting totals to exceed one billion dollars.
Damaged homes caused as floodwaters pushed furniture through walls and ripped apart lives and the living areas of some of the poorest members of the community. Search and rescue teams arrived to conduct house to house searches for stranded victims and those who did not make it through the flood.
While the focus remains on the country music community and the equipment and instruments that have been lost in the floods, stranded victims are still waiting for assistance. Country music superstars have attempted to point the focus away from their plight and bring it back to the people of Tennessee that are suffering from the flood and the damage sustained in their homes. Country music superstar John Rich has commented that the equipment can be replaced and many of the country music stars have a greater ability to replace their equipment, but some of the residents of the areas do not have that same ability and should be the focus of attention.