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Big Thompson Flood Remembered 38 Years Later

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Searchers look through a car in the Big Thompson River west of Loveland after the 1976 flood. Some of the victims of the flood were found in their cars. (credit: casfm.org/Dave Buresh)

Searchers look through a car in the Big Thompson River west of Loveland after the 1976 flood. Some of the victims of the flood were found in their cars. (credit: casfm.org/Dave Buresh)

DRAKE, Colo. (CBS4) – The Big Thompson flood struck 38 years ago, claiming the lives of more than 140 people.

The flash flood on the Big Thompson River on July 31, 1976, swept away cars, flooded Loveland and washed out roads in Weld County.

President Gerald Ford declared Larimer County a disaster area. A handful of victims were never found.

The flood in Big Thompson Canyon happened during the celebration of Colorado’s centennial.

A 20-foot wall of water raced down the canyon after a rare stationary thunderstorm near the upper section of the canyon.

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