(CHARLESTON, W.Va.) — The body of a child who was swept away in fast-moving floodwaters in West Virginia was found Friday as the death toll rose to 14.
The Ravenswood Fire Department said rescuers found the child’s body at 10:45 a.m. Friday, about a mile from where he was last seen in Jackson County Thursday.
Fourteen deaths have been reported from the devastating flooding and historic rainfall, Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin said Friday. He called the flooding "among the worst in a century for some parts of the state."
A view of a home in Clendenin from I-79 pic.twitter.com/LTFQnDm0nQ— Spencer Daily (@Spencer_Daily) June 24, 2016
Initial reports showed 100 homes were seriously damaged or destroyed, Tomblin said.
But amid the tragedies were stories of heroic actions, Tomblin said: police rescued a woman trapped in her car with water rising to her neck, and some people risked their lives to rescue others who were stranded on rooftops and in rivers.
A state of emergency was declared in 44 of the state's 55 counties.
Some 200 National Guard members were helping Friday in eight counties, Tomblin said.
Route 119 (Robinson Run Road), Roane Co. pic.twitter.com/wxQTBi2dVD— Spencer Daily (@Spencer_Daily) June 24, 2016
Rescue efforts were also underway Friday to save hundreds of people who became stranded inside a West Virginia mall overnight after a bridge connecting the shopping center to a main road collapsed and washed away, officials told ABC News.
About 500 people, including employees and customers, became got stuck inside the Crossings Mall in Elkview, about 12 miles from Charleston, around 4 p.m. Thursday, said Rick McElhaney, assistant deputy director with Metro 911 in Kanawha County.
First responders walked some people from the mall around to a back road to board public transportation, an official with the Kanawha County Emergency Operations Center told ABC News Friday morning.
"I have a farm, I have got to get home," one woman said while walking down a steep hill behind the mall.
Crews were also working Friday to build a gravel road to get people out. But some people stayed at the mall because their homes were flooded.
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