VENICE, Fla. -- The water continues to rise even after the Myakka River crested at 2:30 a.m. Wednesday. Neighborhoods along the river have flooded with water three to five, even 10 feet deep in some spots.

Flooding is a way of life for those living along the Myakka River, and most say they wouldn’t have it any other way.

"It's just part of living out here. You grin and bear it all you can do,” says Lenny Jaress, who has lived along the river his entire life. “I was born and raised back here nobody knows the river better than me. When it comes up, it comes up."

And this time, Jaress says the water came up really fast.

“It caught us off guard. It started with rain, thought it would come up to the top of the bank. Next thing you know kept coming and coming and coming. Thank God it quit raining. If it had not quit raining a couple of days ago we’d be in trouble.”

Jaress' next-door neighbor was spared and didn’t have to use her cement blocks to prop up furniture.

“But it’s close, it’s close,” says Ann Connley, who has lived here for 30 years and raised her family here.

Why doesn’t she regret living by the river when there are floods like this?

"Because it’s peaceful. We have wildlife, pigs, turkeys, alligators. There isn’t a better place to live.”

Does Jaress have any plans of moving away?

"No!" he exclaims. "I've been here all my life. I’ll die on this street.”

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