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Monday, August 29, 2016

Tornadoes

It is with grief, and gratitude that I write this post.
Grief for the many people in Kokomo that have lost their homes. 
Gratitude that all of the damage you will see in these pictures, are just of trees, it could have easily been our home, our cars, or us.

I posted this on both of my blogs. 
The house blog, because it happened to our house. 
And this blog, because it just didn't seem appropriate to post about Day 2 in Michigan
when so much is going on in our town. 

Kokomo had several tornadoes last Wednesday.

Dave and I were out of town, and my phone started beeping.
Friends texting....
Were you at Starbucks?
Did you hear Starbucks was flattened?
Mom texted, "we are ok."
Then a friend texted, did you hear a tornado went through Kokomo.  Several people were in Starbucks at the Mall.  They made them all get in the bathroom.  Starbucks was flattened but they survived.  I told Dave and we headed home.

Then this was sent to me as we were driving home.

While we were driving home, about twenty minutes away, another warning was going off on the radio, and this time the tornado was coming right to our home.   As Dave was driving he told me to keep an eye out west for the tornado.  We saw emergency vehicles with people standing outside looking in the air.

We got home, I grabbed the dog and headed  to the basement, and Dave went to the porch to see if he could see anything.  I was watching the tornado on TV in the basement and they said it was coming to Cassville.  That's our area.  I heard Dave running down the stairs and I knew it was here.

He opened the outside basement door and could barely get it closed.  (I've yet to ask him why he did that!)  Then he said, "we need to get in the bathroom."  I was very afraid.
The lights started blinking, the power went out, and five minutes later it was over. 
We went outside to this....
See why I'm grateful?  This is a limb from a huge tree in our front yard.  It missed our house.
More pictures from around our house.
 

Dave was standing here, checking the sky, five minutes before it hit.   
Below is right outside our kitchen window.  We had just finished a nature garden area. 

The pole below had a rather nice size bird feeder on it that we found in our side yard.

And the neighbor came over with his tractor and moved my "bird girl" statue the day before the tornado hit, and look and she is still standing.
Below is the rootball from a tree that was uprooted right on the inside of our woods.
  I'm standing in the same spot where I took both of these pictures.
And this is from our back door.  You can see how close the woods is from where we park our cars.
So you can see how fortunate we were..  These huge trees were this close to our house, all the way around, and we were spared.
This is in the path through the woods from our house....

To Coral Belle.  And she is just fine!
  This was a tree limb that fell across our driveway.
And our neighbor has a backhoe and came over right after the storm, in the rain, and started moving limbs out of peoples driveways. 
You can see the path the tornado took through our woods right across the road.

Large trees snapped in two or bent double.
 This was the view from the West side of our woods where the tornado went through.  Of course, power lines were down everywhere, and we couldn't get beyond the trees in the road.

The tornado came out from our woods, went over our pond and took some trees around our pond with it, then went back in our woods on the other side of the pond. 
 These are the roads east and west of our house, right after the storm.
Of course, the trees took the power lines down.  But peeps, we were only without power for a day.  One day.   


And our neighbors with backhoes, came over and cleared what they could. 
Working together.
 

After the tornado went through, and the rain stopped, a neighbor came over and started on our trees with a chain saw....
the next day another neighbor came over with a chain saw,
and another with a back hoe that he borrowed from his son. 
 On Friday a friend came over and we all raked for about four hours.  We are exhausted, but our front yard is back in order.
 Yesterday my cousin Vickie and her husband came over and the men worked all afternoon and Vickie and I cleaned up the patio and driveway.  Debris is just everywhere.  And it has rained every day since the tornado.  And every time the wind blows more debris comes down.
We still have a mess to clean up.  Like Vickie said, pictures are one thing...but when you see it, you realize.  I realize we were lucky.  We are tired (exhausted) but we have a home.

Any time I talk to my friends, we are all grief stricken.  There are so many without homes.  It seems everyone knows someone without a home now. Our town has set up a shelter and it's FULL.  Peoples pets are being housed in cages at a temporary place set up by Red Cross.  There is a place set up for all of the donations and it looks very organized.  Like a store.    Two high school football teams (Kokomo and Hamilton Heights) were suppose to play each other at Lucas Oil Stadium Friday evening.  Instead of having the game, the two teams worked together that day, in the hardest hit area of our town.  They were honored at the Colts football game.  There have been volunteers from other areas, neighboring towns, helping us out.  I get a lump in my throat just talking about it. 

I've only been in town once since this happened.  Out of respect for the people who have lost everything, I did not take any pictures.  You can see it on the news. 

I just hope everyone knows how much their help is appreciated, at our house, and in our town. 

Peace,
Cindy

8 comments:

  1. Cindy!! What a harrowing experience!! It is truly a blessing that the house was spared!! We have few tornados here, though the thought of one is frightening! Neighbors helping neighbors! Wonderful!! -xo Nellie

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    1. Yes Nellie it was harrowing and we feel SO BLESSED our house was spared. I don't think I have it in me to start over. ANd we could not clean up if it weren't for all of the help from friends, family, and neighbors.

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  2. Living in UK it's not something we experience, the line between your house still standing or being lost is so fine, I m glad to read you are OK, it is heart warming how people come together in a disaster.

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    1. Hi Marlene,
      Nice to meet you. Yes it is, and was, a very fine line between losing everything. We were fortunate. Love your blog, btw.

      Cindy Bee

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  3. So very sorry to see so much destruction, but so glad to know that you and your home are alright. I hope the cleanup goes well. xx

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    1. Clean up is moving right along. It's hard to believe it's been almost a week already. Our neighbor came over with a big back hoe last night and got a lot of the trees picked up and put in a fire.

      Cindy Bee

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  4. We've had a few tornadoes around St Louis whilst we've lived here and I've never been so scared in my life. The devastation is horrendous. Your pictures really bring home how powerful nature can be. I'm just so glad your new home was spared and that everyone is rallying round to help each other.

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  5. Oh my goodness, you must have been terrified! So glad that the house you have been so lovingly working on wasn't damaged and most of all, that you are safe. My heart goes out to those who lost their homes - so very sad. The weather has been so terrible this year. Every once in a while we get small tornadoes here in WA state. They are so frightening. How wonderful that your neighbors worked together to help you out and that your friend and cousins stopped by. People are so kind......Such a lot of work ahead of you....and I am so sorry for everyone affected by this.

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Thank you for taking time out of your busy day to leave a comment on my blog. I enjoy reading them. I hope you have a wonderful day.

Cindy Bee