6-month-old baby ripped from mother’s arms during Hurricane Harvey flooding

There are so many heartbreaking stories coming out of South Texas as a result of the destruction Hurricane Harvey inflicted on the Houston metropolitan area last week.  One story which is now making national headlines is about a 6-month-old baby who was ripped from the arms of its parent in the torrential flooding.

The Houston Chronicle reports that in Walker County, about 55 miles north of Houston, one family was unable to evacuate their home as the surrounding neighborhood became submerged in water. When firefighters responded to a call on Aug. 27, they found a couple fighting for their lives high in a tree after fleeing their pickup truck in the rising flood.

According to one police officer, the parents were screaming and it was soon discovered they had lost their infant child in the storm.

“The current was so fast, it ripped the baby out of their arms,” Jimmy Williams, a member of the New Waverly Fire Department, said. “So, the baby was lost.”

“It’s the worst,” he said. “It’s as bad as you can imagine.”  The baby is presumed dead.

It took rescuers a full three hours to rescue the couple, according to the report.

While 130 mph winds characterized the eye of Harvey, by far the most damaging effect was over nine days of heavy rain. The mayor of Houston has ordered mandatory evacuations of people who still haven’t left their homes, as more than 50 inches of rain has been measured in some areas. As of Monday, 44 deaths have been recorded as a result of the hurricane.

On Saturday, Mayor Sylvester Turner said roughly 300 people had stayed behind in the western portion of the city, whom he has now ordered to leave.  The Army Corp of Engineers has released some of the flood waters from reservoirs in the area, allowing some people to remain in their homes. But, the mayor is now ordering those people to leave, as well.

There are 4,700 dwellings in the flooded area, including houses and apartments.

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