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Former Jamestown woman found alive; Woman safe; another still missing after flash floodwaters washed SUV off a highway

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A former Jamestown woman is safe but another is still missing after flash floodwaters washed their SUV off a highway in west-central South Dakota.

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KOTA-TV in Rapid City, South Dakota, reported Colorado residents Kristen Lakin, 24, and Roxanne Bleibaum, 57, formerly of Jamestown, were stranded on U.S. Highway 85, 20 miles north of Belle Fourche, South Dakota, in Butte County at approximately 11:30 p.m. Tuesday during a torrential rain storm.

The Rapid City Journal reported Bleibaum was able to make her way back to the highway and was being treated at a hospital in Belle Fourche. Rescue crews continued to search for Lakin along the banks of Battle Creek with vehicles, boats and airplanes on Wednesday.

The Aberdeen (South Dakota) News reported Bleibaum was found in “relatively good shape but very fatigued, according to her daughter and the Butte County Sheriff, Fred Lamphere.” After the stranded vehicle began filling with water the two women tried to escape the rising water and were washed away. Bleibaum reportedly walked 1 to 2 miles in a streambed to an old farmstead and followed a trail to the highway. She was found by a county maintenance worker who was setting up barricades on the now-closed highway.

The Butte County Sheriff’s Office did not return a call to comment for this article.

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