Pa. girl, 12, survives getting swept away in drainpipe

A 12-year-old girl in Schuylkill County survived being swept nearly a half mile in an underground drainpipe.
A 12-year-old girl in Schuylkill County survived being swept nearly a half mile in an underground drainpipe.

"I was swooped under, and I tried to look back and see if my sister was there and I was trying to yell and I couldn't because I didn't want to open my mouth so I didn't get anything in my mouth," said Taylor Russell.

She was with friends watching the flood waters rush through a drainpipe on Arch Street in Frackville. That's when she slipped in and was swept away.

Thinking she might die, Taylor held her breath and focused on her family including her mom who died of cancer last year.

"It was just scary dark. My mom helped me through, though. I was thinking of everyone my dad, my mom, my new mom, my sisters and my brothers. I was just praying that I would make it through," said Taylor.

And she did.

When word came that Taylor was missing, emergency crews were waiting to rescue her when she finally appeared hundreds of yards downstream.

"I'm still alive. Like somebody pinch me, I'm still alive I'm here," she said.
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