The search for a 9-month-old boy and his 2-year-old sister continued in Pennsylvania Tuesday — days after they were swept away in a violent flash flood that killed their mother and four others.
Police in Makefield Township in Bucks County identified the missing children as Matilda “Mattie” Sheils and Conrad Sheils.
Their mother, 32-year-old Katie Sealy, was among five people who were killed in the relentless flooding.
The two children, who are originally from South Carolina, were visiting family when they got caught in the rising floodwaters while on their way to a barbecue, fire chief Tim Brewer said.
“Countless” people have offered to help with search efforts but “at this time, we are not recruiting any volunteers from the community,” Upper Makefield Township police said in a Facebook post.
The children’s father, Jim, Katie’s mother Dahlia, and Jim’s oldest son, Jack, all survived after being swept away in the rapid flood waters, according to a GoFundMe set up by Jim’s sister.
The children’s grandmother was treated at a local hospital, police said.
“As they tried to escape the fierce floodwaters, dad took his 4-year-old son while the mother and the grandmother grabbed the two additional children, aged 9 months and 2 years,” Brewer said over the weekend.
About 150 people combed through the creek overnight and 100 others took part in the search for the missing children on Sunday.
“With these 5 deaths, this is a mass casualty incident the likes of which we have not seen before,” the local police department wrote on Facebook. “This has been unbelievably devastating to all the families involved, all of our first responders, and to our community as a whole.”
Bucks County, north of Philadelphia, was walloped by about 7 inches of rain in 45 minutes on Saturday.
The other flood victims were identified on Monday as Susan Barnhart, 53, Yuko Love, 64, Linda Depiero, 74, and Enzo Depiero, 78.
Bucks County coroner Meredith Buck told WHYY that the cause of death for all five victims was accidental drowning.
SOURCE: New york post