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Homes are surrounded by water as flood waters from Spoon River spill into London Mills, Ill., on Thursday night, April 18, 2013. Residents are advised to evacuate, though it is not mandatory. The Mississippi River quickened its ominous rise on Friday after parts of the Midwest were soaked by heavy rains this week, with some towns hurriedly building sandbag levees to protect homes and businesses. S (AP Photo/Journal Star, Nick Schnelle)Copyright 2013, The Associated Press

Floodwaters rising after storms deluge heartland

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ST. LOUIS (AP) — Flood fighters from small Mississippi River hamlets to the suburbs of Chicago staged a feverish battle Friday to hold back raging rivers, after days of torrential rains soaked much of the Midwest.

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