It's been a long week and I wasn't directly affected by the tornado. On My 24/25, 2011, a tornado ripped through two towns that mean a lot to me. That day at work, a co-worked told me I needed to go some place safe for the night b/c it was supposed to be the worst night of storms yet. My brother who lives about 1.5 hours away, was telling me to be prepared as well. They were predicting it to hit his town, not ours.
I get off work, head straight to my house and pack up clothes for the night. My Grandad (well, actually Randall's Grandad, but I claim him!) has an amazing cellar. He has it so nice and clean and he even has electricty down there along with a bed! I told Randall I think we better stay there until we know what the storm plans on doing.
The kids and I lay down in the living room and fall asleep while G-dad and Randall stay up watching the weather. They wake us up around 10:30 and we headed to the cellar. We were down there just talking and listening to the local radio station. About 11:30 the reports were coming in that there was a tornado down in Etna. Etna is where my aunt, uncle, and grandpa live along with my uncle's business. My sister and her son were also there for the night. I was scared to death. You see, there are not many houses in Etna, it's a small town. So when the report said a house was hit in Etna, all I could do was pray. I was in tears constantly trying to get ahold of my uncle and sister. About five-ten minutes later, reports are coming in that there is a tornado in Denning, which is where my Mom & Dad live. Five minutes later, the tornado is heading North to Harmony which is where my niece and nephew were. I was so scared. All I could do was pray. My brother calls me telling me that he was on the phone with my Dad telling him to take cover and then the phone went dead. He jumped in his vehicle and drove to Denning. Randall leaves the cellar and takes off to check on my mom and dad. Finally, my uncle calls and tells me they are all ok, but their house, Grandpa's house are damaged, and the business is gone. Finally, I get a call from my brother saying he got ahold of my parents. But, he also tells me his in-laws are trapped in their house as well. Luckily, they were rescued. I called my niece and nephew and they were all okay as well. Needless to say, it was a horrible hectic night. But, I can say the good Lord was watching over my family b/c everyone is safe and fine. Yes, my uncle and Grandpa have some damage to their house, but it's liveable. My uncle is having to start from scratch to rebuild his business.
The towns of Denning and Etna are pretty much leveled. There are still people without power. Each town lost one person, one being a single mom with a precious 4 year old, and the other being a mom of an 11 year old boy. This was a fatal and scary tornado.
Thoughts and prayers for these towns are appreciated. Things are getting cleaned up, but that just might be the easier part. It's the rebuilding of lives that might be the hardest.
Here are a few videos:
Tiny Town Of Denning Decimated By Twister
Etna Tornado Damage