Flood victims find time for voting - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Flood victims find time for voting

CEDAR RAPIDS (KWWL) - The Michalec family has a strong foothold in the Time Check neighborhood, hit hard by summer flooding. Joe Michalec, his father (also named Joe), daughter and three brothers all lived there, and were all displaced. More hardship came soon after the waters destroyed that neighborhood; Joe, Sr. suffered a stroke the week after, and his wife Dorothy was recently diagnosed with cancer.

But that didn't stop every one of them from voting.

All of them voted absentee out of convenience. "Rather than try to find all their different polling locations, they voted early," said the younger Joe. He says many polling locations in Cedar Rapids were flooded, and moved.

Voting is a family value of high importance in the Michalec family; their ancestors of Czech decent made sure that they voted whenever they could. "My mother," said Joe Sr., "when women were old enough to vote, she was [at the polls]."

Joe, Sr. served in World War 2, and recalls that period of his life as the only time he ever missed an opportunity to vote. His son calls his mother and father, "members of the greatest generation," and that they fought for the freedoms we enjoy today, including voting.

"My parents always considered it more of a responsibility than a right."

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