August 25 | News Release
Record-breaking rainfall sent floodwaters surging through low-lying areas of Middle Tennessee on 21 August. Waverly, Tennessee, was one of the hardest-hit areas, receiving 17 inches of rain in just 24 hours. The rainfall led to deadly flash flooding that took the lives of at least 22 people with 50 people still unaccounted for.
“We’ve been trying to clean up what we can,” said Daron Brown, lead pastor of Waverly Church of the Nazarene. “We’ve lost everything. At least 10 families in our church have lost their homes, and our community looks like a bomb hit it. But it’s times like this is when we see the worst and the best: the worst in terms of disaster and the best in terms of people and God’s presence and grace showing up in the middle of such horrendous tragedy.”
The church is located right next to Trace Creek. When Brown learned the creek was starting to rise again, he headed to the church along with other staff and church members to move items from the building to higher ground and set up a barrier. But the water rose quickly, endangering those in the building. Part of the team was able to leave, but Brown and five others ended up stuck in the church.
“We made the decision not to go get in our cars because the water was rising, climbing up the tires,” Brown said. “We stayed up in the sanctuary’s upper-level and looked out the front door, and we watched our cars float away.”