Orion Couple In Colorado Evacuates Hotel During Flooding
A local couple planning to return home from their Colorado vacation today is stuck there because of the dangerous conditions. They were evacuated from their hotel, thanks to the rising waters.
Orion resident Donna McDowell Metzler and her husband Bill are celebrating their 37th wedding anniversary in Estes Park, about 38 miles northwest of Boulder. With no cell service and phones out, we corresponded with Donna online. After being evacuated to a different hotel, she told us Thursday afternoon the rain was still coming down and rivers going up. The situation is much more severe than anyone saw coming.
"You went to bed last night and I didn't see any warning of flash flooding or huge rains. This was one of those storms that came together in a way, very rapidly came and kept dumping water," said Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper.
Donna also writes, "The downtown area is completely shutdown and the rivers are raging. The parking lot at our first hotel is completely underwater and they are sandbagging." Also, she says, "Spirits are high with all the 'refugees'."
The couple is thankful they didn't try to leave and worry for others who did risk it after hearing how widespread the flooding now is. Boulder County Sheriff Joe Pelle said, "We know that we've lost lives. We anticipate that as the day goes on we may find that we've lost others."
Donna and her husband are trying to keep in contact with family online, too. It could be a couple of days before they can leave, so visitors at the hotel are trying to make the best out of a bad situation. For the couple, it will certainly be an anniversary to remember.