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Meredith collects data to deliver the best content, services, and personalized digital ads. We partner with third charlottesville dating scene advertisers, who may use tracking technologies to collect information about your activity on sites and applications across devices, both on our sites and across the Internet. It was as bright as day the night Warren Raines was orphaned.

The lightning was so intense that it was like now,» says Raines, comparing that night to the daylight of a drizzly September 8 afternoon, the day that would have been his mother, Shirley’s, 80th birthday. If it wasn’t for the lightning» he pauses. I didn’t know what move I’d have to make next. You had to watch your back. Raines, 51, sits on a rail of the bridge over the Tye River in the village of Massies Mill.

Thirty-seven years ago, the warehouse where his father worked sat atop that bridge, washed 50 yards downstream by the flash flood that swept away Raines’ parents, two sisters, and a brother. August, far removed from the cultural watershed known as Woodstock winding down to the north, far removed from the carnage known as Hurricane Camille that had just killed 174 people as it steamrolled through the Gulf Coast. No one knew that Camille’s fury wasn’t quite spent. What started as a seemingly typical rain that evening in what had been a wet summer had, by 2am, pushed the Raines family to flee their flooding home with four neighbor kids in tow. That night, this whole valley was Tye River,» says Raines. Then 14, he survived the deadly waters by clinging to a willow tree. Not far away in another tree along Route 56, his older brother, Carl, held on, too, as Camille went on to take 150 lives in Virginia— 124 in Nelson alone.