Sunday, March 30, 2014

Native Landslide Survivor Describes Devastating Wall of Mud; Missing Reduced to 90

Wind and rain over the weekend have been hampering recovery efforts in the one-square-mile debris field that used to be Oso, Washington before it was obliterated by March 22's devastating landslide.

The official count of the dead rose to 18 on Saturday March 29 as more bodies were pulled from the wreckage, but the number of missing was reduced to 30, from 90. One of the confirmed fatalities was 4-month-old Sanoah Violet Huestis, who was being babysat by her grandmother, 45-year-old Christina Jefferds. Jefferds also perished. In all, authorities had confirmed 17 dead by Friday evening March 28, though they had found several others who were not yet added to the total, pending identification. 

RELATED: At Least 108 Could Be Missing in Washington State Landslide Near Sauk-Suattle Territory

Robin Tekwelus Youngblood was one of the survivors, though she lost everything except a painting. The Okanagon/Tsalagi woman was sitting in her house with a friend, she told the Associated Press, when she heard a roar that sounded like a crashing airplane, then looked out the window just in time to see a wall of mud hurtling toward her mobile home. Within seconds, it was all over.

"All I could say was 'Oh my God' and then it hit us," she told AP. “Two minutes was the whole thing."


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