In March 2016, South Louisiana was hit with, what was thought to be, one of the most damaging floods since Hurricane Katrina. As many businesses and homeowners were trying to rebuild and repair from the March flood, Louisianans were struck again. Only 5 months later, an UNPRECEDENTED WEATHER EVENT WITHOUT A NAME dropped over 30 inches of rain across South Louisiana.
Imagine the heartbreak and horror as they woke up Friday morning to find the water rising yet again. The affected areas were not even remotely below sea level. Just think, the week before there were rocking chairs and swing sets, now there is water. And it's not that pretty Caribbean water that looks like Windex. It's pungent, ghastly, murky river water filled with fire ants and any manner of filth imaginable.
One might think, that a sudden displacement and the evacuation of hundreds of thousands of people would warrant some airtime, but the media was focused elsewhere. Most of the world knew little about the state South Louisiana was in. With the power of Social Media, search parties were formed within hours and the rescues began. So many families, so many lives, so much stress.
Our names are Jimmie and Tracie Spallino we are the owners of Anytime Fitness of Robert Louisiana. During this unprecedented weather event the fitness center became inundated with 4 1/2 of feet of flood water. The water was so high we could not inspect the condition of the club until Sunday. We did have insurance on all of our contents inside of the building but since it was a flood and not a "fire" they don't cover a dime. We did not have flood insurance. We were not required to have it because it was considered a "no flood zone". All we could do was sit back and wait for the water to go down.
We were able to drive to the nearby market and we had to wait for a vehicle to come along, that was high enough to make it through the water. What happened next was something we never imagined to see. The club surrounded and filled by the flood water! The Manager, our daughter, Tabatha Davis jumped into the remaining 2 feet of water to inspect inside the club. She has worked for us for 11 years. Her determination to get into the building was unbearable for us as parents to witness. She is also carrying our first grandchild! The condition of the club was unimaginable! The flood waters had turned the drink machine on its side. It floated the sofas to the other side of the room. Protein bars, C4, and jugs of protein were floating throught out the club. It was heart breaking seeing the equiptment submerged in the murky flood waters. Seeing 8 years of blood, sweat, and tears down the drain literally, pure devastation!
We know we are not alone when we call Anytime Fitness of Robert, home. The members were family to each other and to us. Working out at the Anytime Fitness of Robert was therapy, a stress reliever, it was medicine, and now it is gone. This disaster has taken the club from the town and our family. The impact has taken a toll on the majority of members financially, physically, and emotionally. Many of the members have been a part of our fitness family for 8 years. Not only did this flood take part of our livelihood, it took the livelihood of Robert's members and futures members. However, even still, the members are eagerly inquiring about our plan to reopen. Every dollar raised will be used to rebuild, restore, and refurnish the Robert location. This will allow us to bring the club back to the condition that the members have had and expected for the previous 8 years. The stress and tension that this flood has brought on our members is unimaginable. Our attempt to save Anytime Fitness of Robert is crucial to our town, we need to be up and running as soon as possible. We know our tight knit town of (BOB) is counting on the Spallino family. Our family and members, could not express our gratitude enough to any amount of financial assistance given! Please help spread the word! Share