Yellow Bird: The Red River Valley Flood of 1997
"Ten years ago this month, I stood with my bare hands on the rail of Sorlie Bridge and looked down into the icy, tumultuous waters running underneath. Fear grew in the pit of my stomach.

The Red River was a monstrous, gray beast slithering and winding its way north. It was moving fast. The river rolled and wobbled, touching the sides of the banks spreading and growing, with the noisy ice chunks, big tree branches and debris making sounds like gnashing teeth and growling animals.

The beast-child would grow into the monstrous Red River Valley Flood of 1997.

My children lived in Grand Forks at the time; my son worked at the Herald, and my daughter and son-in-law were students at UND. Four of my grandchildren went to local elementary and high schools.

We never dreamed a colossal event that would invade our lives in the weeks to come.

As I looked down the length of the beast, I whispered a prayer, asked for calm and peace, then made an offering and moved off the bridge. I was nervous and told my children they had to stay away from the river, not realizing that it wasn't going to stay away from them."

Get the Story:
Dorreen Yellow Bird: Red lies in wait like bad dream (The Grand Forks Herald 4/7)
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