Blytheville flooding makes national news

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BLYTHEVILLE, Ark. — Major flooding is pounding northeast Arkansas, and one photo of a school administrator carrying children through the flood waters in Blytheville went viral and made national news.

Constant rain started Monday and didn’t stop until Tuesday morning, turning homes and businesses into waterfront property. By the evening it was receding, but slowly.

Helen and Andrew Mitchell saw water come all the way up their driveway, but it didn’t make it into their house. They’ve been through flooding before.

"It's just one of those things that we have to deal with."

Alex Alkayfee runs a convenience store across the street. He says his parking lot became a lake.

"It was too much water. Nobody could get in all the way to the store," he said. "You need like a swimming to get in. They have to back up. Last night, my business was dead."

Blytheville schools cancelled classes Tuesday and had a hard time getting kids home Monday because of several neighborhoods that were flooded.

Randy Jumper, the district’s director of operations, took two students home in his truck when the school bus couldn’t get down their street.

"I made it all the way to the driveway," he said. "It's just getting out, the water was knee deep, even."

So, he carried both siblings to the door. His kindness made national news.

"My wife comes in and wakes me up and says, 'Hon, you were just on Good Morning America.'"

He had no idea anybody was around taking pictures.

"It's all kind of overwhelming but hey, God gets the glory."

Jumper said other district employees have done things like that before.

"Just something that we do. We love our kids in Blytheville."

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