A flash flood at a popular swimming hole north of Payson killed nine people from an extended Phoenix family Saturday, and left one missing, officials said Sunday. Officials have not released the names of the dead, but family members, who drove to Payson to help search told The Arizona Republic that 14 family members were at the swimming hole to celebrate one of their birthdays when the flood struck around 3 p.m.
Dead are Miguel Garnica, 27, and his wife Maria Raya, who would have turned 26 Sunday, and their children Emily, 3, and Mia, 5; Maria’s sister Maribel Raya, 24, her daughter Erika Raya, 2, and Maribel’s brother Javier Raya, 14; Celia Garcia, 60, the mother of Maria, Maribel and Javier; and Jonathan Leon, 13, Celia Garcia’s grandson. All are from Phoenix. READ MORE