Intermountain Jewish News

Banner
Thursday,
Aug 21st
Home IJN Special Sections Boulder Issue After the Rains: Boulder Jewish families rebuild

After the Rains: Boulder Jewish families rebuild

E-mail Print PDF

SURVIVORS of the catastrophic floods that ravaged Boulder and surrounding areas this past September have not misplaced a single fact or sound. Months after the waters receded, they are haunted by lucid memories immune to time and retelling.

Rainfall was staggering. By Sept. 18, 17.17 inches had descended. In one fell swoop, Boulder established a record for annual rainfall — 30.13 inches — and the year was far from over.

Major flooding covered a north-south path extending for 200 miles along the foothills west of Boulder, Jamestown, Longmont, Estes Park, Sterling and many other towns.

The floods engulfed 4,500 sq. miles, equal to the size of Connecticut.

According to preliminary statistics, 5,958 people were evacuated (2,256 by air); 1,047 pets were evacuated by air; repair of bridges and roads will cost $475 million; 1,882 homes were destroyed, 16,101 were damaged.

As the skies cleared and revealed the bleak destruction below, the numbers rose higher and higher, like the floods that generated them.

Behind every number, there is a human being.

Nearly four months have passed since the “1,000-year event” flattened 17 counties into fields of debris and claimed eight lives.

Survivors now deal on a daily basis with contractors, local and federal agencies, insurance companies and shattered dreams. It’s not like everything returns to normal once the floods disappear — far from it.

Resolution, whether mental or physical, is a long way off. Healing fluctuates. Praise for anonymous armies of volunteers is inviolate.

FEMA, a constant presence since the beginning, recently announced it had finished its work in Colorado and was moving on to the next disaster.

The following people contacted by the IJN lived to tell their stories.

“It’s a wonder more people didn’t die,” they say. Despite the hard road ahead, they are grateful to walk it.

What follows is a then-and-now snapshot of chaos and its continuing aftermath.

DR. Nancy S. Loving, a horse veterinarian, and her husband Roger felt the first flush of panic on Monday, Sept. 9, as calamitous sheets of rain inundated what became Ground Zero.

“By Wednesday evening, we started to see the impact,” Loving says. “By 11:30 p.m., the water backed up to the house. We piled in the camper and drove to a hill behind our home.”

The rest of this article is available in the January 3, 2014 IJN print edition only. Contact Carol to order your copy at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or subscribe to our new online e-Edition.

 

IJN e-Edition

This is only a taste! Get full access to the IJN via our e-Edition, only $14.04 for IJN Print subscribers.

E-Edition subscribers get access to a complete digital replica of the IJN, which includes all special sections.

Get the IJN's free newsletter!

Shabbat Times

JTA News

Life-size statue of Amy Winehouse to be erected in London

Ben Sales A life-size bronze statue of late British Jewish singer-songwriter Amy Winehouse will be erected in the London neighborhood where she lived. ... [Link]

State Dept. says Israel appears to be targeting Abu Khdeir family in arrests

Ben Sales A State Department spokeswoman accused Israel of targeting the family of murdered Palestinian teenager Mohammed Abu Khdeir in recent arrests. ... [Link]

IDF strikes kill three Hamas commanders; Israeli wounded by Hamas mortar

Ben Sales Israel Defense Forces strikes have killed three senior Hamas commanders. ... [Link]

Netanyahu says Gaza op will continue, suggests return to peace talks

Ben Sales In statements defending Israel’s conduct in its ongoing conflict in Gaza, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said he “will look forward to restarting peace negotiations” with ... [Link]

Met Council’s new CEO to step down

Anthony Weiss The CEO of the scandal-tarred Metropolitan Council on Jewish Poverty is planning to step down. ... [Link]

Hamas admits kidnapping Israeli teens

Anthony Weiss A senior Hamas official has acknowledged, for the first time, that the organization’s military wing was behind the kidnapping and murder of three Israeli teenagers in June. ... [Link]

Wallenberg Foundation off the hook in Argentina libel case

mbrodsky The International Raoul Wallenberg Foundation does not have to compensate the grandson of a World War II Argentine diplomat who the group accused of letting 100 Argentine Jews die in Nazi gas chambers... [Link]

Rebecca Lepkoff, photographer who documented Lower East Side, dies at 98

Ben Sales Rebecca Lepkoff, a photographer who documented Jewish life on the Lower East Side of Manhattan, has died. ... [Link]

Intermountain Jewish News • 1177 Grant Street • Denver, CO 80203 • 303 861 2234 • FAX 303 832 6942
email@ijn.com • larry@ijn.com • lori@ijn.com