“The emotion didn’t hit us until we saw how many people came out and helped us,” Woodhouse said. “We will recover from this. This is just stuff. But the friendships, that is what is important.”
Debris flows Saturday caused property damage in several La Cañada Flintridge neighborhoods, including Paradise Valley, the Haskell Drive/Harter Lane area, Escalante Drive and Arroyo Summit Drive.
Nine homes were red-tagged as unsafe, and 43 others were damaged.
But amid the chaotic din of emergency sirens and backhoes, stories like that of the Woodhouse family are emerging — two men wading into a flooded home to rescue an elderly woman, teenagers digging out trapped vehicles, neighbors sheltering the newly homeless.
“I remain so impressed and proud of the way our community has responded to the disaster,” Mayor Laura Olhasso said. “We have had more than our fair share of disaster this year, and our residents have been wonderful in their immediate and compassionate response to helping those in need.”
The Paneno family, which has owned the Big Lots shopping center at Ocean View and Foothill boulevards since 1965, has made its parking lot available as an operation center for county workers. Dozens of dump trucks were parked Wednesday in the lot waiting for their turn in the 24-hour rotation of hauling away debris.
“There is nowhere else to really park,” John Paneno said. “Since our property has a driveway off of Ocean View, and also off of Foothill, it is probably the most strategic spot for them.”
Members of the Kiwanis Club worked quickly Monday to help remove items from Pat Anderson’s damaged Manistee Drive home and ferry them to a storage unit in Montrose.