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Grateful Memories of the Cheyenne Flood on August 1, 1985

Where were you when the flood hit Cheyenne August 1, 1985? (flickR User, rjrgmc28)

Do you remember the Cheyenne flood on August 1 that happened 28 years ago today?

I have some vivid memories of that night and the smelly aftermath and clean up for the rest of that summer in 1985.Living in a house on West 32nd Street, on the corner of Randall Avenue and Cribbon, we saw a river of water with hail floating on top rushing past and heading toward downtown Cheyenne.

I called my boss at Safeway to say I was waiting for the storm to subside before I came in for my night shift. The rain was heavy and severe thunderstorm warnings had been issued. Usually, the summer rain showers don’t last that long so I was waiting it out.

Then the hail started falling and a tornado warning was put out. We watched the river rise outside the front door, getting closer to the top of the porch. Fearing that the waters might soon flood the house and because of my friend’s concern for his Mother living near Holliday Park we left and stupidly waded through the cold, knee-high strong current to his truck.

We made it to his Mother’s house, surrounded by water too, and took her to his relative’s place on higher ground.

The slow moving storm dropped so much rain that a dam north of Cheyenne had burst causing water to flow through pastures bringing torrents of filthy water toward the Capitol City. The hail on the water increased it’s force and it broke through a window at our rented house and the basement quickly filled up all the way to the top step.

Others had it much worse, 12 people died in the Cheyenne flood of 1985. You can read their names on a bronze plaque near the blue heron statue by the bridge on the southwest corner of Dell Range and Ridge Road.

What memories do you have of the flood in Cheyenne 28 years ago today?


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