Exclusive: Civil Air Patrol documents destruction of Matthew aftermath in eastern North Carolina


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Before hitting the sky, Carlisle Lincoln runs through a standard check of the four-seated airplane destined for Lumberton, NC.

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“Surveying the damage and the flood levels, we had the opportunity to call in to approach control for state troopers to check out what appeared to be some stranded people on the highway,” Lincoln said.

Lincoln has been up in the air 25 hours this week, running survey missions for the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). As he’s up in the air, a civil air patrol photographer captures a bird’s eye view of the damage.

“This week, we’ve been surveying areas multiple times. What FEMA is doing is monitoring the cresting and dropping of the water so they can better allocate resources to the area.”

At 4,000 feet in the air, the aftermath from Hurricane Matthew and the flooding that followed, hits the Air Force veteran on a personal level.

“The amount that has accumulated and slowly drained away is devastating local communities. Life has come to a stop as those people know it.”

“It’s fantastic to have an opportunity to be able to do this and serve the community like this. Having retired from the military, the civil air patrol is one of the best mechanisms to do that.”

For Hurricane Matthew, the Civil Air Patrol has made more than 100 flights and taken more than 6,000 photos for FEMA.


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