Florida Woman Fights Through Hurricane Ian Floodwaters To Save Disabled Brothers

by Samantha Whidden
(Photo by Ricardo ARDUENGO / AFP)

A Florida woman is now sharing the heroic story of how she fought through floodwaters caused by Hurricane Ian in order to save her disabled brothers. 

During a recent interview with Fox Weather, Darcy Bishop revealed that her brothers were both born with cerebral palsy and Parkinson’s. The duo also has the mental development of a young child. Bishop explained that her parents had traveled to Wisconsin over the summer and she was home to care for her brothers during the storm. Although her parents were going to come home at the beginning of October, Bishop said she urged them to stay in Wisconsin due to the predictions of when Hurricane Ian would make landfall. 

Although Bishop thought about going to her daughter’s home in Collier County, the situation would have been difficult for her brothers’ needs. She decided it was best for her and her siblings to bunker down and wait out the storm in Naples. Unfortunately, by 8 a.m. on the morning of Hurricane Ian’s landfall, Bishop recalled losing power. This upset her brothers as the storm began to disrupt their daily routine. 

Unfortunately, things took a bad turn when by lunchtime her home had ankle-deep floodwater, which then rose to her calf. She placed one of her brothers into his wheelchair and got the other from his room. “I couldn’t even get the front door open,” Bishop explained. “So, then I tried the garage, and you couldn’t open the car door. There was no way.” 

Bishop Struggled to Get Her Brothers to Higher Ground Amid Hurricane Ian Flooding

Deciding to head back into the home, Bishop said she struggled hard to get her brothers to higher ground amid Hurricane Ian’s flooding. One of her brothers ended up slipping down the stairs and Bishop managed to get up a few stairs with the help of the rising water.

Waves then pushed the wheelchair out the door. In an effort to keep her wheelchair-dependent brother alive, she placed pillows around him as best as she could to keep his head up. However, his body remained in the water.  “I never could get him out,” Bishop tearfully explained. “God bless him. He just kept saying, ‘I’m tired. I’m tired Darcy.’” 

Bishop decided to call her mother at that point to let her know what was happening. “And I just called my mom and said, ‘I love you. I did the best I could to try to save the boys, and I’m sorry,” Bishop explained. Before her phone died, she called her daughter and 9-1-1 to help. But was told that police would only be their way once it was safe. She and her other brother waded in Hurricane Ian’s floodwater until it slowly began to recede. At that point, help was on the way. Bishop told the volunteers coming to help that she wasn’t going to leave without her brothers. Both of them needed to be lifted out. 

Canoes were able to get her and her brothers to dry ground and Bishop reunited with her daughter. She said she would have never left her brothers behind. “I would have drowned with my brothers,” she added. “My brothers are my world. I don’t look at them as being special needs. They’re just like me.”