6th Ida death in Westchester; church volunteers help residents in Mamaroneck

MAMARONECK, Westchester County (WABC) -- The body of a woman who was washed away with her husband during the height of Ida flooding in Westchester has been recovered, officials said Monday, raising the county's death toll to six.

The Harrison Police Department said Rye Brook police notified them that a contractor discovered what appeared to be the remains of the victim under a displaced and partially destroyed bridge not far from where her husband was found.

"With the water level having dropped significantly over the past 48 hours, we are relieved that the victims body was recovered today and that the surviving family are able to have closure," Chief John Vasta said. "Both I and the department would like to send condolences to all those affected by this tragedy."

Meanwhile, a community in Westchester County is banding together to help neighbors deal with Ida's devastation, with volunteers deep cleaning, collecting trash, and helping homeowners save what they can.

About 100 volunteers of the World Mission Society Church of God is continuing the efforts in Mamaroneck, where some areas saw up to 14 feet of water.

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Ida caused historic flooding throughout the Tri-State Area, and one of the hardest hit areas was Mamaroneck in Westchester County, with some neighborhoods reporting as much as 14 f


Besides providing residents with labor, the volunteers aspire to give the community hope as they begin to rebuild from the storm's deadly wrath. At least five deaths have been reported in the county.

They're also donating clothes, food, time -- and labor -- on this holiday weekend.

"We're here to help Mamaroneck," a church leader said during a quick pep rally.

Then, the volunteers got to work, splitting up into teams and each heading down a different street.

"So we have these volunteers going, knocking on doors, seeing whoever in the neighborhood needs help," World Mission Society Church of God's Kimberly Gonzalez said.

Many are happy to have five or 10 extra sets of hands to carry out dripping wet bags of soaked belongings and bigger items that have to go out with the trash. Many are small families.

"So they don't have the manpower that it takes to remove all of this," Gonzalez said. "The drywall, the appliances that were ruined, the couches that were destroyed."

The area is flood prone, but one thing so many people are saying is that they weren't prepared for this level of flooding.

"They didn't realize how bad it was going to be," said Dion Duran, who is cleaning out his sister's home while she's away on vacation. "It was so quick. It was like half an hour."

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He said his sister expected to deal with a minor mess, and nothing like this.

"They just re-did the kitchen," he said. "They just re-did the bathroom. It's going to be a long process."

The church's goal is to make that process a little less painful and a little less overwhelming.

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