Family Sheltered In Ditch Recalls Being Swept Away By Flood

Monday, June 3rd 2013, 10:22 pm
By: News 9

The search continues for family members missing after flood waters swept them away on Friday.

A group of 11, mostly children took shelter inside a storm drain under S.W. 15th Street near the Dell plant. Now, three kids and a 21-year-old man are missing.

6/3/2013 Related Story: Search Continues In OKC For Several Victims Swept Away By Floods

The family thought the drain was the best place to escape the tornados, in fact they say they've done it before. A four-month-old remains at Baptist hospital, and the family's hopeful the four others are found alive.

Complete Coverage: May 2013 Tornado Outbreak

"We tried to get out, but it was too late," said Virginia Shrum. "The water was so strong, that I couldn't move."

It was the first place 24-year-old Virginia Shrum says her oldest brother thought of as the threat of a tornado headed toward the metro.

"The tunnel right by the OKC River. We didn't even have time to actually get notified about the flash flood warning," said Shrum.

Shrum and ten of her family members took shelter inside the storm drain. She says six young children, four of which were her own were all waiting inside for the storm to pass. What they weren't prepared for was flash flooding, and a powerful current.

"I had my three-year-old, and my four month old in my arms. When the last wave of water hit me, It knocked me off the wall," said Shrum.

As she was swept away, she held on to her youngest child, 4-month-old Rose who is now showing signs of improvement in Intensive Care at Baptist Hospital. At one point, even doctors didn't think the baby was going to make it. But, two of her daughters were swept away, 3-year-old Terra, and 4-year-old-Destiny, as well as her six-month old baby sister and 21-year old brother.

"My oldest daughter was holding on to my fiance, he kept trying to get her to wrap her arms around him," said Shrum.

"I didn't think I was going to make it, because I was in the middle of the current when the water was going," said Shrum's fiance, Alvin Hennington. "I can't even sleep."

Shrum says her 4-month-old could be taken off life support as early as Tuesday. She's praying her two daughters come home alive.

Another search continues in the Deep Fork Creek along I-44 for another flooding victim after Fridays storms. Her family says she was swept away in flood waters Friday as they took shelter in a drain along N.W. 26th and Meridian.

6/3/2013 Related Story: Search To Continue For Seventh Family Member Lost In Floodwaters

The body of the victims young daughter was found Monday afternoon.