Torrential rains pounded East Texas on Saturday, and six people tragically lost their lives, including a great-grandmother and four school-age children.
The downpour forced residents to wade through water up to their chins after rain swamped a cul-de-sac of homes during the night and forced some onto rooftops. In less than an hour, more than 7 inches of rain had accumulated at the city's water treatment plant, according to ABC News.
The bodies of 64-year-old Lenda Asberry and her great-grandchildren—6-year-old Jamonicka Johnson, 7-year-old Von Anthony Johnson Jr., 8-year-old Devonte Asberry and 9-year-old Venetia Asberry—were found in the receding waters of Palestine, Texas.
According to NBC 5, Palestine Police received reports that the family was missing around 3:45 a.m. The bodies of two children were found in the front yard of a residence near their street. A continued search found the bodies of an adult female and two more children.
“She had all four kids trying to lift them up out the water. I don't know how she was doing it,” said Asberry’s son, Doniell Hudnall, to NBC5.
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Hudnall said that Asberry was the legal guardian of all four children.
Authorities found a sixth body later on Saturday, identified as 30-year-old Giovani Olivas of Palestine.