"I feel hollow inside," Frank Urso said. "I've had an emptiness in my stomach since I heard about it."
Urso received word Monday morning that his brother-in-law, longtime Rutland City employee Michael Joseph Garofano, fell victim to Sunday's storm.
"This is just horrible," Urso said. "I don't know how you can wake up in the middle of this, it's like it can't happen."
Vermont State police started a 60-man search in Mendon Monday morning for Garofano, 55, and his son, Michael Gregory Garofano, 24. The elder Garofano worked as Rutland City's Water Treatment plant supervisor, he and his son went to check on the reservoir near Mendon Brook Sunday, an area devastated by Irene.
"Apparently the bank gave way and they were swept away," Urso said.
Michael Joseph Garofano's body was recovered in the Vermont river, officials are still on the hunt for his son.
"This is simply a monumental tragedy on a number of levels that, frankly, I have no words to describe," Rutland Mayor Chris Louras said.
This tragedy took place in an area now isolated due to severe structural damage, many families can't evacuate. Police are denying anyone access to this part of Route 4 past Mendon which is one of the hardest hit areas, structurally in the state, but it's also a crime scene which complicates things. Families in Killington say they're concerned for those stranded without food and water.
"I'm really concerned. They have no water, no running water and no electricity and we have food but the fridge is not working," said Sasha Stanich, who can't reach his family in Killington.
Stanich watched families roll suitcases down the state highway, hoping to see his wife and two young children.
Now, an area that's already facing significant transportation limitations, structural damage and evacuation issues is trying to stomach the loss of a community member.
"He grew up in the city of Rutland and I'm sure he will be heavily mourned," Urso said.
Helicopter crews have been circling the Rutland area and will continue to search during daylight hours.
Elsewhere in Vermont, a young woman from Macedonia was killed in the flooding. She was participating in a work program at the Mount Snow resort and was swept away while watching the Deerfield River Sunday. Police say another man was found dead in Lake Rescue in Ludlow.
Saturday, March 8 2014 8:07 PM EST2014-03-09 01:07:08 GMT
A rally at the State House in Montpelier Saturday. A passionate group of dozens of women, and men, assembled in front of the State House Saturday for the Women's March for Dignity. They were demandingMore >>
Women's March for Dignity say they are demanding lawmakers support paid sick day policies for all workers.More >>
Saturday, March 8 2014 10:21 AM EST2014-03-08 15:21:27 GMT
Two firefighters are recovering from minor injuries. They were injured while fighting a at the Bennett Farm on Route 15 on the Johnson-Cambridge town line. The fire started in a shed around 7:30 FridayMore >>
Two firefighters are recovering from minor injuries.More >>
Saturday, March 8 2014 10:20 AM EST2014-03-08 15:20:42 GMT
Friends are rallying around families who lost everything in an apartment building fire in St. Johnsbury. They immediately took to Facebook after hearing about this fire and started planning to collectMore >>
Friends are rallying around families who lost everything in an apartment building fire in St. Johnsbury.More >>
Saturday, March 8 2014 10:20 AM EST2014-03-08 15:20:05 GMT
Reporter: "What are some of the most common burn injuries that we see with kids coming into the hospital?" Jim Esdon, Dartmouth Hitchcock Injury Prevention Center: "This time of year, the glass frontedMore >>
We've had another cold week that's left homeowners cranking the heat. But what does that mean for kids' safety?More >>
Saturday, March 8 2014 10:19 AM EST2014-03-08 15:19:21 GMT
Armed with just two L rods, 87-year-old John Wayne Blassingame starts looking for water by asking yes or no questions. "Does it go past 20 feet, does it go past 30 feet, yah," he says. The rods crossingMore >>
A national organization based in Danville says it is providing resources to people in desperate need to find water.More >>
Saturday, March 8 2014 8:31 AM EST2014-03-08 13:31:36 GMT
The Governor is traveling to Rhode Island Saturday. His office says Governor Peter Shumlin will be at Brown University in Providence taking part in a forum with the Rhode Island Governor. While theMore >>
The Governor is traveling to Rhode Island Saturday. More >>
Saturday, March 8 2014 8:17 AM EST2014-03-08 13:17:30 GMT
We have some ideas for your Saturday. IRISH FESTIVAL The 19th annual Burlington Irish Heritage Festival kicks off today. There is a lecture about the role of Irish immigrants in the Civil War at theMore >>