MOVING FORWARD: Kelly Todd and David Wilson two years on from Tropical Cyclone Debbie.
MOVING FORWARD: Kelly Todd and David Wilson two years on from Tropical Cyclone Debbie. Georgia Simpson

Mud a reminder of cyclone destruction

SPARKLING white walls and spotless grey floors don't allude to the events that unfolded two years ago.

No one could have predicted the house by the sea in Conway would have waves crashing at the front windows, and floodwaters from Proserpine River streaming into the house.

 

Swell whipped up from the cyclone engulfed the swings, with waves crashing on the front of Kelly and David's home.
Swell whipped up from the cyclone engulfed the swings, with waves crashing on the front of Kelly and David's home. Contributed

Kelly Todd and David Wilson finally have their home in order, two years on from Tropical Cyclone Debbie.

Ms Todd said it wasn't the howling wind, the driving rain or the rising flood waters that have stayed in her mind; it is the mud.

"Mangrove mud. It smells like saltwater and dead things. It's always stinky and it's sticky," she said.

Mr Wilson said the sound of the eerie, howling wind will be forever seared into his mind.

The pair said they could never have predicted water coming in from both sides, and the damage it would cause.

Ms Todd and her partner stayed to protect their home, against the advice of emergency services.

If they didn't stay, they would never have been able to save all the photos, and keepsakes of Ms Todd's late son Jake, who died in a car accident eight years ago.

Mr Wilson said along with the precious photos, his chainsaws were also saved, thanks to being placed in a boat, which floated once the floodwaters crept up.

The chainsaws were useful during the clean up.

Because there was no structural damage to their home, Ms Todd and Mr Wilson said they were lucky, and their insurance claim process was a lot more straight forward.

It still took well over a year for their home to fixed, and it was around the 18-month mark Ms Todd said she felt house proud again.

"There's still some mud in places though," she said.

Exactly two years on from one of the most destructive cyclones in Australia's history, the couple said they no longer sweat the small stuff, and their outlook on life has shifted slightly.

The only thing missing for them, in the community they love is the renowned Wilson Beach swimming enclosure, which has been a topic of debate.

"We can't wait for that to be fixed," Ms Todd said.



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