There are eerie signs of flood devastation 50 kilometres out of Eugowra: enormous uprooted trees, churned up roads, and rising plumes of dust.
The western side of the village looks untouched, but just metres away shops are gutted, houses have been sheared from their foundations and twisted corrugated roofs sit on front lawns.
Four days after the Mandagery Creek doubled in height and pushed a wave of water through the village in central west NSW, residents and emergency services are cleaning up.
Outside the Central Hotel on Friday morning, workers used a Bobcat to scoop up debris: a slow-cooker, an ice-cream freezer, buckets and shoes, all caked in sludge.
Luke Knight, who owns Orange construction company L-Con, said 50 workers volunteered to bring trucks and equipment to Eugowra to support the neighbouring community.
Earlier in the week, his crews helped a Vietnam veteran clear out his ruined home and unearthed the war medals he feared were lost.
"I said: 'We're not leaving here until we get them'," Mr Knight told AAP.
The workers moved furniture around until they found the medals, a valuable ring and a watch.
"That was pretty emotional. He said, 'Mate, I'll never forget'.
"I said, 'Mate, you're the one who served our country'."
One survivor told Mr Knight of tying himself to a pole to avoid being washed away, while another looked on helplessly as his neighbours' house toppled and a horse drowned.
Off the main street on Friday, firefighters pulled on HAZMAT suits to remove spoiled meat from the decimated butcher shop.
NSW Police Rescue officers found a light brown dog huddled about five metres up a tree, naming her "Lucky" until her owner could be found.
Remnants of canola harvested at a nearby farm were washed into town during the flood, tangling around wrecked cars and fences.
Emotions boiled over when Peter Jones, a longtime resident and former police officer, confronted Premier Dominic Perrottet during his visit, saying he was angry about how long it took for help to arrive.
Mr Jones said communications had been out for days, leaving the town unable to call for help or track down family and friends.
"I've had a gutful," he angrily told Mr Perrottet, who assured him his concerns were heard.
Mr Jones told reporters he watched the floodwaters come towards his house, and called triple-0 when he heard of others perched on their roofs.
"I told them I need a helicopter. They tried to tell me that it's only a small flood.
"(There was) panic. Everyone was trying to get out.
"All the cars around town were people trying to escape, the water was coming that quick, they just could not get out."
John Anthes, 75, a local State Emergency Service volunteer, said he was up at 3.30am on Monday monitoring water levels of creeks nearby, and knew something terrible was coming.
"This was a flood of monumental proportions. Something that would usually happen once in 200 years."
Mr Anthes said he has nothing left, only his old Jaguar car.
"My wife is in Orange. I told her to stay there. She can't take it."
Many Eugowra residents fear being forgotten, as a town of 800 people far from Sydney. They do not want to move.
Mr Perrottet promised that will not happen.
"We'll rebuild and we'll rebuild in a strong way. I don't want people to leave the towns they love.
"People have lived here for their entire lives. I can see how close-knit this community is, I can see the spirit in this community."