The devastation from the catastrophic Louisiana flooding is becoming clearer. Many people here have lost everything, reports CBS News correspondent Omar Villafranca. The historic flooding since Friday is responsible for at least eight deaths, and more than 11,000 people are homeless. Thousands of homes are damaged. With flood waters on the move, it may get worse before it gets better.
"We're not going to give up, we're gonna stay 'til the bloody end, and if it knocks us down, we're going to get back up, and we're going to rebuild," Sorrento Mayor Mike Lambert said.
Overnight, voluntary evacuations were underway in Ascension Parish as flood waters from the overflowing Amite River poured into the community.
On Monday, National Guard helicopters pulled more people to safety from the unprecedented flooding hitting southeastern Louisiana. We went along as they took us on a search-and-rescue mission into the flood zone.
Roughly 90 percent of the homes in Denham Springs have flood damage. The city's main highway is washed out.
Christina Braud and her boyfriend Brookes Wilson returned to their flooded home for the first time Monday.
"This is my entire life that I worked my entire life for just washed away," an emotional Braud said.
"It's like the end of your life, end of your world," Wilson said. "You know, having to start over like that."
More than 11,000 people have been forced into shelters and 20,000 have been rescued since Friday in large part due to the help of volunteers.
"I'm very proud of the effort we're making. More than anything else, I'm proud of the way Louisianans are taking care of their own," Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards said.
Craig Pourciau's home is a loss, but he's thankful for what he still has.
"We're homeless today, but we're hopeful," Pourciau said. "But we're gonna rebuild, we're gonna get back."
The concern now is for areas south of Baton Rouge as the flooding heads downstream. Gov. Edwards will meet with federal officials Tuesday to discuss the recovery process.