BOULDER, Colo. (CBS4) – Conditions were so bad in Jamestown the only way out for stranded residents was to be airlifted by military helicopters. The rescue involved almost 300 people.
Some residents were taken to a nearby shelter, but many were reunited with friends and family at the Boulder Municipal Airport. Friday night the airport became a hub for teams from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). One team came from Nebraska and specializes in urban search and rescue. They will help find people still unaccounted for.
Familiar faces made everything a little better after the ordeal of the last few days.
“I’m usually not very emotional, but this is emotional,” a Jamestown resident said.
Those stranded in Jamestown by floodwaters were airlifted out Friday with National Guard helicopters.
PHOTO GALLERY: Destruction In Jamestown
“Colorado has some of the best military pilots in the world and now we’re putting it to the greatest use possible — rescuing American citizens,” Lt. Col. Mitch Utterback with the Colorado National Guard said.
Along with the citizens, their belongings and pets were saved, but some of their homes and friends are gone.
“It’s like everything you know and love, and you just see it get swept away in hours,” another Jamestown resident said.
“One friend dead and no idea, you know, when we can go back and what will be left when we get back,” another said.
What was left Friday was captured in photos taken by Ted Krohn. One image was of a shattered home ripped apart at the seams surrounded by floodwaters. In another picture was an image of the mudslide that crushed a house belonging to Joey Howlett. He died in the destruction.
As those stranded were delivered to safety, FEMA crews mobilized and prepared to head in to assess damage. They’ll find a way for the residents of Jamestown to rebuild so they can return home at some point. The FEMA team from Nebraska was joined by another team from Utah.
Colorado Floods: How To Help
The recent floods are impacting families and communities throughout Colorado, so CBS4 has compiled a list of ways you can support the local communities impacted by the floods.