Reading the news about the flooding in Colorado is both sad and reminiscent. On July 31, 1976 I was in Estes Park when a torrential downpour sent massive amounts of water down the Big Thompson Canyon. More than 170 people were killed and some bodies were never recovered.
Now it’s happening again but on a much larger scale. The cities of Boulder and Longmont — two places I used to call home — are under emergency alert with roads cut off and homes under water, and the town of Lyons, the “gateway to the Rockies,” could be washed away if the dam above it doesn’t hold. The streets of Estes Park, the town at the front door of Rocky Mountain National Park and near where I spent ten summers as a camp counselor, are rivers now. In July 1982, Lawn Lake Dam, located in the park burst, sending a wall of water through the town, causing over $30 million in damage.
I still have friends and family in that part of Colorado. Yesterday I called Allen’s mother, who lives in Longmont, to find out how she was doing. Her daughter and son-in-law, who live in Lyons, were evacuated early Wednesday morning, leaving behind their home on the banks of the St. Vrain River.
If you want to help, here’s how: