NewsUplifting Arizona


Globe residents rally together as storm cleanup begins

Posted at 6:22 PM, Aug 19, 2021
and last updated 2021-08-19 22:23:33-04

GLOBE, AZ — A glimmer of hope in a hard-hit small town Thursday... the selfless acts of the community helping to heal the wounds of a devastating round of storms.

“The water was up to here,” said Joel Stapelton pointing to the exterior wall of his Pizzeria.

The five-foot-high watermarks are still evident from Wednesday evening's floods. His security cameras captured the moment they were left behind with the water creating a river outside their door within minutes.

“It’s scary, every time the flood alert comes on, it’s like oh man no more,” said Stapelton, owner of Vonnies Pizza.

For the past few weeks, the towns of Miami and Globe have been pummeled by rain sending floodwaters shooting down atop the Telegraph burn scar. The community was hit once again Wednesday evening.

“The camaraderie and the relationship with everybody, we call everybody brothers and sisters here,” said Stapelton.

It’s that mentality that allowed this small town to put the pieces back together. Stapelton said once the water receded, another flood came in, this time it was a flood of neighbors and strangers, ready to help.

“I’m getting kind of teary-eyed because of the community, we’ve had so many reach out on Facebook or call us over the phone, my wife wanted to turn off the phone because there was so much outpour, what can we do, can we come down,” said Stapelton.

By morning, heavy machinery moving mud were already on his property free of charge, and random motorists stopped by to pick up shovels to help.

“You see it time and time again in these little towns, that’s why we love living here, tight-nit, you help somebody out, someone helps you out,” said Andy Bower.

That's something we saw all over town. Little Acres Mobile home park was bustling with volunteers after the homes there were hit harder than anywhere else.

“The mine sent a bunch of people, thank God,” said one resident with relief.

Dozens of workers from Freeport McMoRan scattered through the park clearing debris, furniture, providing waters, or just a shoulder to cry on.

“We’re just here to help out wherever we can, we’ve got people down here in the trailer park area, we got people up the road with vac trucks helping to vac out houses, stuff like that,” said Louie Barreras, an employee with Freeport McMoRan.

“It doesn’t surprise me, I’ve been here for 63 years every time there’s a major disaster like this, we have an outpouring of the whole town,” said Stapelton. “The only reason we were able to open back up so quickly is because of them. We may have been closed multiple days otherwise.”