NASHVILLE, Tenn. — A Lebanon family is safe now after being trapped in Yellowstone National Park earlier this week following major flooding.
The popular national park was closed indefinitely after the flooding. Park leaders said high temperatures, melting snow and rain caused flooding that damaged homes, covered roads and destroyed bridges — trapping thousands of people who were visiting the park.
Just a few yards down the road from where the Fogartys were staying, they watched water sweep away homes. They said they were trapped in the park for days and lucky to be okay.
“That’s when it set in that we were stuck,” Angelia Fogarty said.
Days after Fogarty and her family checked into a hotel in Yellowstone National Park, the rain started to fall, snow began to melt and the next thing they knew they were trapped.
“A gentleman told us that either exit or entrance was blocked off due to landslides and road erosions,” Angelia Fogarty said.
More than 3 inches of rain fell and melted snow from days of high temperatures flooded most of the park.
“There was a house that was just a little bit downstream from us and we watched it,” Cindy Fogarty said.
Cindy Fogarty, Angelia’s mother, said they watched as that house, just a few feet away from their hotel, filled with water and then plunged into a flooded stream.
“After a few hours they said, ‘No, you’re not going anywhere. You can’t go north and you can’t go south,'” Cindy Fogarty said.
The Fogarty family spent 2 days blocked in by landslides and flooded roads. They originally thought they would only be there for around 4 hours.
“They told us we couldn’t drink the water and we couldn’t shower or anything,” Cindy Fogarty said.
People then started to lose power and the Fogartys said things only got worse.
“The town was running out of food and also bottled water,” Mark Fogarty said.
But on Tuesday night everything changed. Crews cleared a road and people began to leave.
“They escorted us out 100 cars at a time,” Mark Fogarty said.
While driving out of the park, just inches away from floodwater, the Fogartys were counting their blessings.
“There were people losing their homes and all of their personal belongings and we were safe, so we felt very, very lucky and fortunate,” Angelia Fogarty said.
Yellowstone National Park was just one of many stops the Fogartys planned for a 15-day road trip. They’re now on their way to the Rocky Mountains, grateful for their safety.