In 2016, Old Ellicott City was destroyed by a flood that left the historic town in ruins. Less than two years later, on May 27, 2018, Old Ellicott City was faced with the tragedy of another flood that devastated the shops, homes and livelihoods of many citizens. The flood that occurred this year was even worse than the one in 2016, which poses one dismal question. Will Old Ellicott City be able to bounce back again?
Since 2016, engineering firms have been trying to reconstruct the drainage systems to ensure that the city would be safe if a storm like this ever occurred again.
The flooding started at approximately 6:30 pm and quickly spread to neighborhoods close by. Highways like I-695 and many side roads were all flooded, making it impossible to drive. Many cars were lost as a result of the flooding, and rescue boats were sent out to save anyone in danger of being swept away.
One National Guardsman, Sergeant Edison Hermond, went missing during the flooding. Two days after the flood, his body was found washed up on the bank of the Patapsco River in Baltimore. Hermond was the only one reported missing, and no other bodies were found as a result of the flood.
The country has mourned his death, praising his heroic action of saving the life of a woman who was trapped in the floodwaters, only to be swept up in them himself.
“Make no doubt about it: Mr. Hermond is a hero who put the lives of others before his own,” Howard County Executive Allan Kittleman told the Baltimore Sun. “He saw somebody in need. He didn’t think about himself. And went to bring aid. And we as a county will be forever grateful to him.”
Throughout the duration of the storm, the Roger Carter Center and St. Peter’s Episcopal Church were both used as shelters for residents and others affected by the flood. St. Peter’s also offered a hot meal, toiletries, a place to charge cell phones, cleaning supplies and more.
Spanish teacher Ms. Claudia Tonguino said, “It’s going to take a lot because a lot of these people have no more savings.”
Mt. Hebron’s SGA has set up a flood relief fund called Hebron Helps to raise money and provide support to those affected by the storm. In addtion, Key Club, Vikings Helping Vikings, Red Cross Club and more clubs around the school have been raising money to support the victims of the Old Ellicott City flood. On June 6, students had the opportunity to go to Squisito from 11 A.M. to 10 P.M., where 15% of the proceeds was donated to Old Ellicott City.
Mt. Hebron’s Principal Dr. Miller said, “I knew right away that the SGA and the kids would step up and do something for our community.”
Sophomore Sharyn Gomez agreed. “I think it’s great that people want to help their community. It shows that we all really care and want to see us strive together as a community and create a better environment within the community.”
Four Mt.Hebron students were affected by the flood, and the money will be going to them first before it goes to a relief fund set up by the county. The school and surrounding neighborhoods will continue to work to help those affected by the flooding and will come together to support one another in any way they need.