The flood waters rose on Highway 595 in Berea in a matter of minutes, catching a set of grandparents and two grandchildren by surprise.
"You could hear the children screaming in the background," explained Rhonda Rogers, whose parents and children were trapped in the van.
Rogers said her father called her after dialing 9-1-1, saying the foursome might not make it out of the Honda Odyssey alive.
"It was filling up so fast---- He had to get off the phone. He said 'If we don't get a boat down here, we're all gonna die.'"
Family members say they felt helpless watching rescuers fight the current, fighting to save lives.
"It was coming in so fast---looked like water was gonna fill up the whole car before the firefighters got there," explained 9-year-old Sarah Rogers, who was trapped in the van.
"When the firefighters come, I was the first to get out. My granny, she was the hardest," Rogers continued.
"I thought we could get through... Next thing I know, we were swept into a ditch," explained Beverly Bullock, who was driving the van.
"I thought I was gonna die," said 8-year-old Louis Rogers.
"We're just glad there's a happy ending," said Coy Bullock, who was in the car. "I looked up and said to the devil, 'You didn't win today.'"