UPDATE: Six killed in Palestine flooding

Update: A sixth flooding victim has been identified today after a body was found on a County Road in Palestine.

30-year-old Giovanni Olivas reportedly was swept under flood waters around Anderson County Road 370. His body was found around 5:30 p.m. today, according to Anderson County Sheriff Greg Taylor.

 

 

Update: A great-grandmother and four of her great-grandchildren died in a flash flood in Palestine overnight.

Authorities tell Fox 4 that 64-year-old Lenda Asberry,  9-year-old Venetia Asberry, 8-year-old Devonte Asberry, 7-year-old Von Anthony Johnson, Jr., and 6-year-old Jamonicka Johnson all died after heavy rainfall forced them on to the roof of a home.

A neighbor tells Fox 4 that he attempted to save the family but was unable to reach them due to flood waters. Their bodies were found early Saturday morning.

Palestine Mayor Bob Herrington offered his condolences to the family stating that the flooding the city experienced overnight was unprecedented. 

"The City of Palestine has suffered the worst flooding event in my 59 years of living here," said Herrington in a prepared statement. "I don't recall ever seeing this much water rise so fast and in such a short period of time."

City officials report that its water treatment plant recorded 7 1/2 inches of rain in less than an hour.

Fox 4 is told that Police responded to 100 block of Timber Drive after reports of homes being flooded up to their roof-lines.

Rescue workers from the Palestine Fire Department and the Palestine Public Works Department used fire trucks and dump trucks to attempt to evacuate people.

A temporary shelter has been opened at the Palestine Mall for those displaced. The city is coordinating with the American Red Cross for further relief efforts.

A GOFUNDME account has been set up for the family.

 

Update: Authorities have identified the flash flood victims in Palestine as 64-year-old Lenda Asberry,  9-year-old Venetia Asberry, 8-year-old Devonte Asberry, 7-year-old Von Anthony Johnson, Jr., and 6-year-old Jamonicka Johnson.

The city says its water treatment plant recorded 7 1/2 inches of rain in less than an hour.

"The City of Palestine has suffered the worst flooding event in my 59 years of living here," said Mayor Bob Herrington in a prepared statement. "I don't recall ever seeing this much water rise so fast and in such a short period of time."

The mayor offered condolences to the victims and said it is too early to know the extent of damage throughout the city.

Original: A 64-year-old woman and four children were found dead near a flooded home in Palestine early Saturday morning.

Severe weather hit the area Friday with heavy rainfall, causing flash flooding.

Police responded to the area because of reports of homes in the 100 block of Timber Drive being flooded to the rooflines.

Rescue workers from the Palestine Fire Department and the Palestine Public Works Department used fire trucks and dump trucks to attempt to evacuate people.

They received a report of a missing family from the neighborhood. Workers started going house to house, Palestine police said.

They found the woman and the children, ages six, seven, eight and nine.  Two children were found in the front yard, near the street. The woman and two more children appeared to have been swept away to an area behind the house by fast-moving floodwater, police said.

As many as eight other families on Timber Drive are also displaced due to the flooding. All other residents are accounted for, police said.

The City of Palestine set up a temporary shelter at the Palestine Mall. The city is coordinating with the American Red Cross for further relief efforts.

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