f/8 and Be There
Fred Lynch

Kingshighway flooding 1981

Posted Wednesday, June 15, 2016, at 12:00 AM

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June 19, 1981 Southeast Missourian

An adventurous youth wades through thigh-deep waters to investigate two parked cars wallowing in the parking lot in front of K-mart, 11 South Kingshighway. The photo was taken from the traffic island south of the Kingshighway-Independence street intersection.

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Boats could have navigated parts of Mount Auburn Road as nearby Cape LaCroix Creek overflowed its banks. Above, the view is looking north on Mount Auburn Road with North Kingshighway in the background. Below, a wooden footbridge in Arena Park normally crosses Cape LaCroix Creek. (Fred Lynch photos)

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Rains flood creeks here, close roads (excerpt)

By Jay Wolz

Rain, more than four inches of it in some areas, deluged the city of Cape Girardeau and parts of Cape County today causing creeks to spill over their banks causing flood damage and closing some roadways.

City police monitored Cape La Croix Creek during the early morning as it spread beyond its banks flooding several adjacent streets and highways, notably North Kingshighway near Mount Auburn Road and East Rodney drive southwest of Arena Park, Independence street west of Kingshighway and Bloomfield Road.

Norman Weiss of the Agriculture Stabilization and Conservation office in Jackson, said that between 4 a.m. when the storm began and 9 a.m. the rainfall measured was 4.1 inches. "And it was 4.4 inches at my home on Route W east of Jackson," he added.

Several Cape Girardeau businesses along Cape LaCroix Creek reported parking lot flooding, but no major damage.

Leonard Seabaugh, general manager of Town and Country Motors, 1733 North Kingshighway, said several cars on the business's rear storage lot received some degree of damage, but only two or three cars with serious flood damage.

"But there was no water damage to the building," he added.

Water from the creek also backed up this morning around the Independence street bridge over Cape LaCroix Creek and flooded some of the parking lot at K-mart, 11 South Kingshighway, forcing closure of about three rows of the parking lot.

"It's still coming up," reported K-mart assistant manager Mike Harris at 10:30 a.m., who said the water near Independence street was knee-deep in some places.

Jerry Kistler, the manager of Wal-Mart, 211 South Kingshighway, said the creek at mid-morning hadn't flooded behind his store yet, "but it's at the top."

Cape Girardeau Police Department Capt. Howard H. Boyd Jr. reported that there had been only minor flood problems in scattered parts of town. "We just have certain areas that are prone to flooding," he said.

City Public Works Department crews were sent to the Cape LaCroix Creek bridges at Independence and Bloomfield to try to remove debris pushed up onto the pavement by the floodwaters. Both bridges were closed this morning due to high water. North Kingshighway near Mount Auburn Road was also closed temporarily at about 8 a.m.

Previous blog:

Burger Chef flooded out (1977)

Photo gallery:

Flash Flooding in Cape Girardeau (1986)


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  • I remember it well. I think it was the first big flash flood since the one in 1977.

    -- Posted by DKKCCG on Sat, Jun 18, 2016, at 10:19 PM
  • Remember it well. A cop was letting idiots in four wheel drive trucks fly through the water in front of Town Plaza, causing waves that were letting water to enter buildings which should otherwise been dry. I told the cop standing there just watching, that if he didn't stop them, I would expect damage payment from the city. Suddenly, he walked out and stopped the nonsense.

    -- Posted by JungleJim on Mon, Jun 20, 2016, at 11:51 PM