Missing as Death Toll in California Mudslides Climbs to 18

Sergio Conner
January 14, 2018

While this list often fluctuates as new information is obtained, here is a current list of people reported missing that are considered active investigations. They include a couple who fell in love with their Montecito community, a family of Mexican immigrants and a college student and her dad, a doctor.

An evacuation order has been extended and people are being warned that those staying behind may hinder the rescue operation. "She was exceptional", said Gina Conte, who described Riskin as her best friend, mentor and confidante.

The Santa Barbara sheriff's office reports that an 87-year-old victim was located in his Montecito, Calif. home, bringing the total number of casualties from to 18. Her company confirmed her death in a statement posted Wednesday night, January 10, 2018, on Facebook. Crews are still trying to dig the 10,000-person town out from the mudslides that blocked roads, damaged bridges and once again forced dozens of businesses to close in this bucolic seaside community that counts Oprah and Ellen as homeowners.

"My sister was such a good person, she only thought of others to the point that she would cry with you when you were hurt or sick", said Ramos' sister, Jennifer Ramos.

The cause of Bleckel's death wasn't announced, but all other victims died from multiple traumatic injuries due to a flash flood and mudslides. Although the median home value in Montecito is $3.3 million, not everyone who lives here is wealthy. Conte said Riskin, who was the maid of honor at her wedding, took joy in pairing the ideal home with the flawless family and loved cooking, going for long walks and spending movie nights with her family. She and her mother, Marilyn Ramos, were among those killed in the Tuesday, Jan. 9, 2018 mudslides in the area.

In one of the hardest hit areas, a silver Mercedes-Benz, its front and rear fenders completely destroyed, sat atop a tree stump, the only thing left where a home once Saturday. Her body was found Wednesday near a highway. She survived. Jack, her 16-year-old brother, is missing.

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Mark Montgomery's wife and oldest daughter were out of town on a business trip. "I should have just told her to leave".

Roy Rohter, 84, founder of the Saint Augustine Academy in Ventura, was killed on Tuesday when a mudslide swept him from his Montecito home, according to officials at the private Catholic school. "He has done so much for so many people and pro-life and Catholic education causes".

Later Saturday, Brown said a 19th victim had been found and named her as Morgan Corey, 25.

"We have a yard to redo and hopefully our insurance will help out with that, but the people across from me, newer homes, gone", said Garrett Speirs, a 54-year-old artist who has been living in Montecito for 20 years.

The former professional ballerina was known as the first lady of luxury real estate, KEYT reported.

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