Search Shifts to Recovery Effort for Nurse Feared Lost in Landslide

The search continues for a woman who went missing in a Columbia River Gorge landslide earlier this week — though officials acknowledged the rescue had shifted to a recovery effort Thursday after crews identified the area where her vehicle is likely buried under 15 feet of mud and debris.

Rescue crews with the Multnomah County and Clackamas County sheriff’s offices — along with numerous other agencies — have scoured the rural areas in the vicinity of where Jennifer Moore’s SUV was carried off in a mudslide late Tuesday night.

Moore, an oncology nurse at Legacy Good Samaritan Medical Center, was reportedly driving home after a date with her husband in Warrendale when her SUV was pushed off Interstate 84 by landslide debris.

Crews specially trained in marine and mud rescue used safety lines and rafts to expand their search Thursday.

Deputies say the mud posed a tremendous safety risk and challenge with hidden holes, unstable footing and a lack of visibility.

They say the vehicle is likely upside down and under about 15 feet of mud, rocks and debris. All ground search efforts have been suspended.

The sheriff’s office said there is no estimate on when they can get to the vehicle, as more rain in the forecast will lengthen the time it takes to dig through the debris.

Oregon Department of Transportation crews will lead the debris removal efforts while resource deputies continue to assist Moore’s family during this difficult time.

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Jenny Moore.

Stephanie Lawson, a Canby resident as well as a friend and coworker of Moore’s at Good Sam, started a GoFundMe campaign for the family that has already raised more than $10,000.

“Thank you, thank you, thank you for the abundance of support you all have given to Jenny and her family from near and afar,” Lawson said on the page. “The circle of people that love her is neverending. Let’s keep up the good work and continue to help this beautiful woman and her sweet family.”

Lawson described Moore as an amazing woman, compassionate nurse, trusted colleague, wife, mother and a wonderful friend.

“Her infectious laugh brightens any room and her kindness extends to all she meets,” she said.

Evacuation orders remain in effect in the town of Dodson, because officials say more sliding is possible. The large landslide was caused by heavy rain in an area burned a few months ago in the Eagle Creek wildfire.

The Multnomah County Sheriff’s Office says the Red Cross has rooms available for Dodson evacuees at the Best Western in Hood River, located at 1108 East Marina Way.

More photos from this week’s rescue effort:

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