Tragic Flash Flooding Claims Lives in Upper Makefield Township: 5 Victims Identified, 2 Children Still Missing

5 Killed in Flash Flooding in Upper Makefield Township, Pennsylvania

The coroner’s office has identified the five victims who tragically lost their lives in flash flooding over the weekend in Upper Makefield Township, Bucks County. The victims have been identified as 78-year-old Enzo Depiero of Newtown Township, 53-year-old Susan Barnhart of Titusville, New Jersey, 32-year-old Katheryn Seley of Charleston, South Carolina, 64-year-old Yuko Love of Newtown Township, and 74-year-old Linda Depiero of Newtown Township.

According to the Bucks County Coroner, Meredith Buck, the bodies of Enzo Depiero, Barnhart, and Seley were recovered by search crews on Saturday, while the remains of Love and Linda Depiero were found on Sunday. Buck stated that all five deaths have been ruled accidental and were caused by the weather-related flash flooding. The victims drowned due to the sudden surge of water, and Love also sustained injuries.

The coroner expressed condolences to the families and friends of the victims during this difficult time, acknowledging the impact on the community. The tragic incident has left two children, 2-year-old Matilda Sheils and her 9-month-old brother Conrad Sheils, still missing. Authorities have resumed the search on Monday for the missing siblings.

Jim Sheils, the father of the missing children, along with their 4-year-old son and grandmother, managed to survive the flood. Sadly, Seley, the mother of the three children, lost her life as she attempted to escape with her family. Upper Makefield Township Fire Chief Tim Brewer shared the heartbreaking details, stating that the father and his son were able to escape, but the grandmother, mother, and two children were swept away by the floodwaters.

Scott Ellis, the uncle of Matilda and Conrad, expressed gratitude on behalf of the devastated family for the tireless efforts of the emergency personnel involved in the rescue operation. He acknowledged their compassion, kindness, and bravery in such challenging conditions. The search for the missing children continues with the utilization of sonar, air and water operations, and rescue dogs. Additional resources from Pennsylvania and New Jersey are being brought in to aid in the search.

The flash flooding incident occurred when heavy rains poured down on Saturday around 5:30 p.m., leading to the sudden flood. The area was hit with an astonishing 6 to 7 inches of rain within an hour, trapping at least 11 cars and causing damage to several roads. Rescue teams from across Bucks County quickly mobilized to respond to the emergency.

As the search for the missing children continues overnight and into Tuesday, authorities remain committed to exhausting all efforts to bring closure to the grieving families. The devastating flash flooding tragedy has left a profound impact on the entire community and serves as a reminder of the unpredictability and dangers posed by extreme weather conditions.

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