Vermont swift water rescue team returning from Texas

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BURLINGTON, Vt. (WCAX) It was two-and-a-half hard days of searching homes that had not been searched since the floodwaters rolled in.

"The structures are still there," said Mike Cannon, the head of the Vermont Search and Rescue team. "But people have lost everything."

Lost everything and the water doesn't seem to be going anywhere.

"Some subdivisions had water up to their roofs, some were still submerged," Cannon said.

The Vermont team of swift water rescue experts worked with teams from Toledo, Ohio, and Roanoke, Virginia. Home after home, helping in the search for the nearly 20 people still missing from Orange County. All the while on alert for poisonous snakes, alligators, even fire ants. And more often than not, finding animals, some alive but a lot were dead.

"Quite a bit of agriculture down here. They've been hit pretty hard as far as the livestock and horses," Cannon said.

Reporter Kristin Kelly: You deal with really difficult situations all the time. How does this compare to what you've experienced before doing this job?
Mike Cannon: It's really no different than what we've done before. I think the only thing that kind of overwhelmed a lot of people is the size of it.

Hundreds of miles to cover and deep devastation wherever you look. But he says the team was inspired by the work and kindness of so many people they met, all wanting to help Texas bounce back.