In a statement this morning from the Utah Governor’s office, Gov. Gary R. Herbert has authorized the lowering of the American flag and the Utah State flag at all state facilities in observance of the two tragic incidents in Hildale and Zion National Park. The flags will be lowered on Thursday, Sept. 17, through Friday, Sept. 18, to honor the southern Utah flash flood victims and to serve as a tribute to the first responders who came to their aid.
“I join with other Utahns in mourning the tragedy in Washington County and Zion National Park,” Herbert stated. “Jeanette and I send our thoughts and prayers to the families and friends of those who have lost loved ones. I thank the first responders, volunteers and other officials involved in the recovery effort.”
Hildale Mayor Philip Barlow said Josephine Annie Jessop, Naomi Jessop and eight children ranging in age from 5 to 11 were in the van that was washed away by the flash flood. The Jessop’s son, Joseph Jessop, was the lone survivor who reportedly jumped out of the van before it was swept away by the wall of water. He jumped to attempt to get help.
Della May Black was in a Chevy Suburban that was also caught in the flash flood with five children ranging in age from 4 to 10 years of age. Two young boys from that vehicle also survived. One boy is still missing.
At a press briefing this morning in Colorado City, authorities thanked those who offered to assist in the Hildale flash flood incident as volunteers.
“At this time there is no identified need of further volunteers. Thanks again for the community wide support.”
Sheldon Black, one of the fathers, said his gratitude was beyond words. Mayor Philip Barlow called it “a very tender time” and also expressed his gratitude.
A Memorial Fund has been set up at Mountain America Credit Union. It is the Josephine Naomi and Della Memorial Fund.
Those wishing to donate may make a deposit at any Mountain America Branch using:
Bank Routing Number: 324079555
Account Number: 011010203333
Marked Deposit to the Account of: JOSEPHINE NAOMI AND DELLA MEMORIAL FUND
Or donations may be mailed to:
JOSEPHINE NAOMI AND DELLA MEMORIAL FUND
PO BOX 842520
HILDALE, UT 84784
Questions may be addressed to:
Mountain America Credit Union
PO Box 9001
West Jordan, UT 84084
Tax ID #: 47-5059916