A Florida woman has told how rising flood waters forced her to flee her home with her one-year-old grandson on her back.© Joe Raedle/Getty An aerial view shows a vehicle driving through a flooded street after Hurricane Sally passed through the Gulf Coast September 17
Ceteria Holley said she climbed on top of her dining room table as several feet of water engulfed her home in Pensacola on Wednesday, WEAR TV reports.
“At first it was my belongings, then it went to me, my grandbaby and my daughter… Are we gonna make it through the night? Are we gonna survive this? Because it was that bad,” she said.
The grandmother said around 7 a.m. the water continued to rise and she had to evacuate her home in the Forrest Creek Apartment Complex as the building became another casualty in the aftermath of Hurricane Sally.PlayAd 00:21 – up next “Hurricane Sally Damage In Photos”Loaded: 100.00%Unmute0Hurricane Sally Damage In Photos
Holley said her only way out was to swim by escaping out her back window.
Rescuing her grandson, she put the infant on her back so he wouldn’t drown.
“We ended up climbing out my back window and swimming to higher ground behind us and water moccasins were right beside me swimming. I was so scared. I was so scared,” she said.
Holley was just one of dozens of other residents living in the Forrest Creek Apartment complex who escaped.
John Honeycutt said he took a canoe and rescued at least seven people and two dogs.
“I heard children crying so I went over there, got me a canoe boat, and I went through here saving people,” he said.
After making landfall on the Gulf Coast early Wednesday morning, Hurricane Sally’s Category 2 storm wreaked havoc on the states of Florida, Alabama and Mississippi.
The storm surge flooded streets, damaged homes and left over 440,000 people along the coast without power, according to Poweroutage.US.
Holley said she is tired after taking “blow after blow” and help is needed before it’s too late.
“I have patience, but I don’t have patience,” she explained.
“I don’t because at the end of the day this is all I had. I was rock bottom before I came here. I don’t have nothing….put yourself in our shoes. This isn’t right. This isn’t fair.”
Prior to the storm making landfall, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis issued an emergency declaration for his state but Escambia County hasn’t received an emergency declaration from FEMA yet.
A declaration would free up much-needed money to help the community rebuild.
Pensacola residents took to social media to share the horror of the storm last week.
Twitter user Mackenzie King posted a video showing Sally “wreaking havoc in Pensacola,” with “many roads submerged in water.”
The Weather Channel’s Chris Bruin shared a video of downtown Pensacola, showing streets flooded as “the water keeps rising” in the hours before Sally made landfall.
“Very serious situation unfolding with the worst of #Sally still hours away,” Bruin wrote. “Views from our hotel. Whitecaps rolling down most streets.”
Twitter user Jim Cantore shared a similar video, showing Sally’s winds and storm surge damage a number of areas across the “bay side of Pensacola Beach.”