ZACHARY, LA (WAFB) - A Baton Rouge resident received a warm homecoming ceremony Friday morning.
Gladiola Haney, 65, lived in her house since 1991 until the 2016 flood displaced her.
As waters rose, Haney was rescued by a neighbor on boat, flown out of Baton Rouge to be reunited with family, and stayed in a hotel until the waters subsided.
Despite her home being badly damaged, Haney moved back to her house and lived there for two years until volunteers came to her aid.
United Health Care (UHC) gave a $100,000 grant to disaster recovery organization SBP. Grant funds from UHC have helped SBP restore homes for 45 families throughout Baton Rouge. The two joined Mayor-President Sharon Weston Broome’s office to welcome Haney back home. The group provided volunteers to rebuild Haney’s house. Leaders say they wanted to help Haney because she has always opened her home to the community.
“It’s a special day for me. It’s beautiful. I like it and i’m glad to be home," said Haney.
“She gives... gives, gives, gives constantly. Sometimes she don’t receive when she need to, but she got a big receiving this time, big receiving. She deserves it. She deserves it," said Kelly Stewart, Haney’s niece.
Haney has more than one reason to celebrate. Her birthday is coming up, so everyone in attendance sang happy birthday following the ribbon cutting ceremony.
More than 2,200 volunteers donated nearly 45,000 hours to rebuild the homes.