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May 18, 2011 11:53 PM by Maddie Garrett

Mandatory Evacuations Clear Out Butte La Rose

Butte La Rose, Happy Town and Sherburn Wildlife Management are now under a mandatory evacuation in St. Martin Parish. And any residents left in the area are encouraged to pack up now.

Residents must be out by 8:00 a.m. Saturday, May 21st. And once residents leave they won't be allowed back in until the waters recede.

"It's hard, there's no way you can move everything," said Ethel Lasseigne.

85-year-old Lasseigne has already packed up her retirement home in Butte La Rose. She came back Wednesday for one more thing.

"Just to say goodbye," she said.

By this week, many residents in Butte La Rose have already headed to higher ground to ride out the flood.

"Most people have left, they are taking this seriously they are not playing around with it," said St. Martin Parish President Guy Cormier.

Cormier explains calling a mandatory evacuation wasn't easy.

"Because people want to come and check on their properties and all but this is about public safety," said Cormier.

People's safety could be threatened when waters rise to an estimated 27 feet next week, which would block off roads and force power companies to shut off electricity.

Lennet Boudreaux had planned on riding out the flood, but now he's decided to pack up his life and leave too.

"Got an 18-wheeler full, so it's a chore," said Boudreaux.

The streets of Butte La Rose now look more like a ghost town. As residents say goodbye, they wonder if they'll have anything to return to.

"Planned on retiring here, I was going to retire in a couple of years. See what happens from here," said Boudreaux.

An emergency shelter will be set up at the Breaux Bridge High School gym which will also open at 8:00 a.m. Saturday.

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