WATCH: Father relives #flood horror

In order to try and find some safety, the family climbed onto the windowsill and clung to the burglar bars to get away from the water.

An Edenvale family was almost torn apart when their house flooded due to the November 9 storm.

#Floods Gallery: Residents band together to clean up after devastating floods

During the downpour, two of Mr Baron Mackenna’s three daughters were washed away by the force of the water while trying to get to safety.

“I felt so helpless being unable to help them,” said Baron.

Multimedia: Videos and gallery from November 9 floods

Remembering and talking about the stressful moments of that evening is still difficult for the father of four.
“When I relive those moments I feel as if it was my last day on earth. I never thought I would see my daughters again,” said Baron.
Baron, a High Road resident, said he thought it would be a pleasant evening at home with his family when the rain started at about 4pm.

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He was spending some quality time with his son at the time, playing Nintendo Wii.
Unknown to him, the night would become one of the most traumatic experiences of his life.
“It was nice, continuous rain but as time progressed water came into the house and just kept on rising,” said Baron.
“The water kept rising in the house and we didn’t know what to do,” said Baron

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In order to try and find some safety, the family climbed onto the windowsill and clung to the burglar bars to get away from the water.

“We hung there until the glass by the front door broke. That’s when I decided to move and get out the house,” said Baron.
It was then that two of his daughters, Taryn (14) and Nicole (22) were swept away by the water.
He said while trying to get outside, for the family to climb on top of their vehicle, his 14-year-old daughter, Taryn, started panicking.
“I just kept on repeating to her ‘don’t panic, daddy has got you’,” said Baron.
He tried to get her to remain calm.

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While trying to move through the water to the car, Taryn was swept away.
“She was swept away by the excessive force of the water,” said Baron, as he continued explaining his attempts to get to his daughter as water was pushing her down their driveway.
“As a parent I felt so helpless. I just saw my daughter (Taryn) washed away by the water – so strong – and then Nicole following her. I screamed at her, ‘Taryn stop there,’ and she grabbed onto a pole, but the water was so strong, she could not hold on and she was washed away,” said Baron.
His eight-year-old son, Ethan, then started screaming.
“As a father it put me in a difficult position as all my children were in danger.”
He managed to make his way back to the car where his son, mother, and third daughter, Kiara (12), were.
After returning to the car, Baron said the remaining family members; his mother, Ethan and Kiara, waited the rain out and waited for the water to subside.
The rain lasted for three hours. At about 8pm neighbours brought him the good news about his daughters’ whereabouts and said they had been found at a nearby restaurant.
“Apparently, while Taryn was being washed away, she found a dustbin and used it as a boat, but somehow it tumbled and she had to hold onto a pole,” said Baron.
He said security personnel from a nearby restuarant saw Taryn in distress and assisted her and Nicole.
“They saved them. I am so grateful to everyone who assisted us,” said Baron.
He said he is uncertain of how his oldest daughter got there but was extremely grateful they were both safe.
The event has been traumatic for the family.
The father said all of his children have been affected by the events of November 9 and are shaken.
He does not think his daughter will be able to write exams.
“My younger children are all concerned and ask if I am ok,” said Baron.
Because of the damage done and the clean-up needed, Baron had to take several days off work in an attempt to get his life and that of his family back in order.
“Going through an event like this really shows you how life can be taken away. It is an honour and a privilege to have family – community members must remember that,” said Baron.

Watch Baron relive and explain the traumatic events of November 9.

  AUTHOR
Stephan Lehman

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