EMTs on vacation help treat campground victims - NBC12 - WWBT - Richmond, VA News On Your Side

EMTs on vacation help treat campground victims


Right now, authorities are not sure just when everyone will be allowed back onto the campground to survey the damage and get their belongings. The area where people come to play and relax has become an obstacle course of debris.

The warnings went off and just three minutes later, chaos ensued.

"We seen like a rain band, but it was a weird, weird rain band and in a matter of seconds it hit land and that was all," Delaware resident Betty Thomas said.

Thomas and her family have come to the Cherrystone Campground for decades. With little warning, she was stuck outside as the storm blew through.

"We couldn't let go," she recalled. "We did not let go. We stayed out in it, figuring hold on tight."

Julie Gallagher, who is visiting with her family from New Jersey, can't get those moments out her head. She still hears the screams.

"Someone comes running out of nowhere and screams ‘I need help. I need help,'" she described. "I ran over there and there's the little girl probably eleven-years-old just sitting there and I look down and there's her parents' bodies."

She and her boyfriend Storm Yusko were in the right place at the right time. Both are EMTs.

"You needed to help this person over here but that person needed to be helped and that trailer's on fire and this one's got a tree through it," Gallagher explained.

The parking lot at Northampton High School has become a campground in some ways.  The school is where authorities sent anyone looking for shelter.

"When we were on our way here I just broke down started crying to him," Gallagher said. "I said I didn't know what to say. What do you say to that? She said ‘I just watched my mommy and daddy die.' What do you say to that?"

But they don't find any answers to questions they never thought they'd have to ask.

"I mourn for all the families that lost their loved ones and no vacation should wind up like this," Yusko added. "It was just a terrible, terrible thing. Last night we were fishing and crabbing. And now this morning I'm running around with my truck with blue lights on trying to pull trees and save lives."

At this point authorities don't know just how long the cleanup here will take.

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