75 Years Of News On 6: SkyNews 6 Pilot Looks Back At 2019 Flooding

Five years ago this week, heavy rains caused flooding all over northeast Oklahoma, especially in Muskogee County.

Wednesday, May 22nd 2024, 6:13 pm



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As severe weather continues to impact Green Country, many Oklahomans are reminded of the devastating floods of 2019. 

Five years ago this week, heavy rains caused flooding all over northeast Oklahoma, especially in Muskogee County.

Pilot Dustin Stone and I flew over all that flooding five years ago, and Wednesday we took the helicopter back down to Muskogee to see how different it looks.

The farmland is dry and the Arkansas River is well within its banks, but it was a vastly different scene in 2019. 

"That's halfway underwater this entire house is," says Osage SkyNews 6 Pilot Dustin Stone.

He hasn't looked back at this video in a long time.

"It's real surreal to look at the video again, ya know you think you remember it all, we were over it every day for a week plus," he says.

Flying back over the same places in 2024 is different, but some things jump out from memory.

Like a building that was once covered in water, is now gone.

"You just remember everywhere you could see was underwater and we were a thousand feet in the air and as far as we could see was underwater, it's remarkable," he says. 

It was a long week of seeing nothing but broken communities suffering underwater, and it all culminated with barges breaking loose in the Arkansas River and crushing into Lock and Dam 16. 

"It's a lot, it's a lot to watch it again," says Stone.

Looking back can be hard, but for many of these towns hit so hard in 2019, looking forward is what matters.

One thing both Dustin and I noticed looking back is that these communities are resilient and have recovered so well that today it's hard to tell what happened five years ago.

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