Barksdale Air Force Base deployed dozens of airmen to help with sandbagging needs throughout the surrounding community following heavy rainfall that peaked Wednesday night.
More than 50 airmen from the base have helped at a sandbagging station near the Red Chute Bayou levee in the Dogwood south subdivision of Bossier City, said Capt. Damiqua Champion. Champion said they first arrived on site Wednesday night and started up again by 7 a.m. Thursday. He added that most of the sandbagging efforts have centered around the north end of the Red Chute levy, where soldiers also laid down plastic tarps.
Champion said several members of the community also stopped by to pick up sand bags from the station.
"The overall mood seems pretty calm," Champion said. "It's a really good sense of community. It's an honor to be out here and doing something for the community."
Kori Nagle, who lives next door to the sandbagging station, stood with a brightly colored umbrella while watching the air force base's efforts. Nagle said she and her family re-located from Germany to Bossier about two months ago when her husband was deployed here.
"We're used to rain, but not in this quantity," Nagle said. "It's a little scary. A coworker of my husband's lost everything."
Nagle said an optional evacuation of the area was announced Tuesday. She said her family decided to stay because she had friends visiting from out of town and small children, and her home hasn't yet run into any trouble yet with high waters.
"Unless they make it a mandatory evacuation, there's no reason," Nagle said. "We're watching. We're praying for the families that have it so much worse than we do. We're feeling very lucky right now."
Jimmy Halbrook, a heavy equipment mobile I operator with the Bossier Levee District at the sandbagging station, said he had also helped with the floods in 2009 and June of 2015.
"They've been a lot of support, bringing the sandbags here," Halbrook said. "We're 24/7 till the threat is gone."