Family with Utah ties evacuates ahead of catastrophic flooding in Houston

Posted at 6:11 PM, Aug 27, 2017
and last updated 2017-08-27 20:11:25-04

COTTONWOOD HEIGHTS, Utah -- A former Utah woman is staying with her parents in Utah to avoid the catastrophic flooding surrounding her new home in Houston.

Ashley Johnson and her two daughters decided to fly out of Texas on Thursday after being warned from someone who lived through Hurricane Katrina.

“My husband and I thought it would be better to be safe than sorry, to get the girls out; he’s safe in Austin,” Johnson said.

Her husband, Brian Johnson, is a football coach for the University of Houston. The former Ute quarterback is training with his new team in Austin to get away from the storm.

Ashley Johnson is staying at her parent’s house in Cottonwood Heights with her daughters.

She is also keeping in close contact with her neighbors who remain in Houston. The neighbors are sending her messages about the tornado warnings, power outages and even snake and alligator sightings in the water. Some are sending pleas for boats to be rescued.

“I just have a lot of panic and anxiety, not knowing what’s happening to our home and our friends, getting in touch with everybody and making sure everybody's safe,” Johnson said. “We know we made the right decision, but it is hard knowing there are people we love and care about are still there and stuck.”

The Johnsons moved into their Houston home on May 1. The last photo her neighbors sent of her home shows her SUV nearly covered with water.

“I’m assuming now that the water has entered our home,” she said. “I don’t know when we will be able to get in there.”

Johnson says the damage being caused in Houston will take a long time to recover from. She is urging Utahns and anyone who would like to help do donate to the American Red Cross. Donations can be made at this website.