When Kentucky mother-of-two Jessica Willett saw the flood that had engulfed her home, her immediate thought was how she could save her children. Eventually, she came up with an idea of how to ensure they remained together even in a worst-case scenario.
For the past few days, Kentucky residents have been struggling to cope with the massive flood that unexpectedly hit the state. Since the flood started, it has washed away bridges, homes, and vehicles resulting in countless losses of properties.
Also, it has displaced many people from their homes and tragically ended the lives of many adults and children who could not escape in time. Amidst this chaos with separated families and friends still trying to find each other, one woman narrated how the flood affected her family and what she did to avoid being washed away.
KENTUCKY MOTHER DISCOVERS UNEXPECTED FLOOD
Willett was at her mobile home with her two children, 11-year-old daughter Navaeh, and her 3-year-old son, Isaiah, when she heard a sound outside around midnight. She went outside to check what was happening and was shocked to discover that flood waters had risen and surrounded their home.
According to Willett, the water was right on her porch, and “it was raging like rapid water.” The mother-of-two could hear the floors of her mobile home popping and cracking, and it felt like the floors would soon give way.
Willett’s instant thought was how to ensure the safety of her two children because at that moment, with the water rushing, it felt like she and her kids were already in it due to the flood’s strong current.
Willett knew she had to make a quick choice because the flood might soon sweep away their home. She remarked:
“I was sitting there and I was looking at them … thinking what [am] I gonna do? What am I gonna do? Am I gonna try to save them? Because there was nowhere I could go.”
WILLETT TIES HERSELF TO HER CHILDREN
While pondering what to do to save her kids as quickly as possible, Willett came up with an unexpected idea. The worried mom grabbed a vacuum cord and cut off the vacuum cleaner. Next, she grabbed her two kids and tied the three of them together.
Before she climbed out of her son’s window with the three tied together, Willett called the kids’ father to tell him she had tied herself to the children. Willett explained she did this to ensure they would be together, and if the worst happened, at least their bodies would later be found.
With the water already filling up their sitting room, Willett moved her kids to the bedroom, where there was no water. While waiting in the room, the flood lifted their mobile home from its foundation, moving them down the road about 100 feet.
Luckily for Willett and her kids, their house got stuck on a cliff. So the trio waited all night until about three to four in the morning before trying to make their way out of the mobile home.
Willett heard mud falling, and she was scared they could get covered up by a mudslide, so she opened the window and saw that they were on the road, still covered with water.
Willett subsequently walked into the water to check how deep it was before returning for her kids when she realized it was safe.
As the three geared up to make their escape through the window, Willett could not suppress her fears and started thinking about how drowning would feel like for her and the kids.
However, without any other choice, Willett and her kids made their way into the raging water and fought through it.
The trio was able to make it 50 feet away from the house until they reached her father, who had hurriedly left his home and was waiting for them.
“If they find us, they’ll find us together.”
As southeastern Kentucky’s roaring floodwaters rose around her, Jessica Willett cut an electric cord off a vacuum cleaner and bound herself to her two children.
They survived the long and harrowing night. https://t.co/HlOKB0uMNu
— USA TODAY (@USATODAY) August 1, 2022
THE MOTHER-OF-TWO SPEAKS ABOUT THEIR SURVIVAL
After successfully making it to safety with her children, Willett declared they all made it because someone was out there looking out for them. Willett noted:
“It had to have been God – things going through my head, ‘do this, do this.'”
She disclosed that their home had been reduced to a mangled pile of metal, and the flood waters had washed their whole trailer into the road. Sadly, since the trailer was blocking the road, it had to be burned down to make way for commuters.
Kentucky mom Jessica Willett’s quick thinking during the #KentuckyFloods saved her and her family. She used a vacuum cord to tie herself to her kids.
Jessica joined FOX Weather earlier to speak to @KendallSmithWX and @StephenMorganTV about the ordeal. https://t.co/nHTYxWcNkW pic.twitter.com/AwDRuLO2MR
— FOX Weather (@foxweather) August 2, 2022
The flood had left Willett and her kids homeless. They had also lost all their properties and were only lucky enough to escape with their lives. She was thankful to everyone who had offered support to her and the kids since their story became public.
The GoFundMe page for the family to get a new home has raised more than $50,000 in donations. Willett confessed that it breaks her heart to think of the destruction the floods caused for other people and families.
Willett revealed people have been texting and writing to her, saying, “you’re a hero.” However, she noted that she is not a hero but a mother who did what any other parent would have done to ensure the safety of their kids.
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