Road to Recovery: Residents recall April 27th tornado outbreak
Aftermath of April 27, 2011 tornado outbreak.
HARVEST, AL (WAFF) -
Thousands of Alabamians marked the two-year anniversary of the April 27th tornadoes Saturday. It's a day residents in Harvest will never forget.
"The biggest part of that day was that I was unprepared. He's at the front door and he starts screaming, get in the closet. It got quiet and then it was like the whole earth just let loose," said Donnie Wolfram.
"It went on for four or five hours, one round after the other. You never really knew when it was going to be over," said victim Ed Wilbanks.
Despite the weather warnings people were caught off guard, some where even holed up in closets.
"I was hearing my children scream and I couldn't do anything to help them," said victim Anne Remy.
Other victims said they were trapped in their cars.
"The feeling of your car lifting with the wind and skidding with it is very uneasy," recalled Stacey Biggs.
Seven people lost their lives that day in Harvest, countless lost their homes.
"It was devastating, especially being in this community for so many years, to see the damage that was done," recounted firefighter Chad Conner.
For many residents the rebuilding process is finally finished. But two years later, the Harvest community is still scarred by the devastation.
In many places where homes once stood now sit empty lots, broken concrete and gravel are all that's left where families chose not to rebuild and move on with their lives instead.
"There were trees behind us that are no longer there anymore. A lot has changed since the storms," said Remy.
The road to recovery is a long one, some folks said it will never truly end.
"You take a hit to your psyche in times like that," said Wilbanks.
They were born just two weeks apart. A 10-week-old baby and 8-week-old pit bull have a fascinating relationship. They absolutely adore each other! Louisiana native Brandi Hodges, 25, has posted photosMore >
A 10-week-old baby and 8-week-old Pitbull have a fascinating relationship. They absolutely adore each other!More >
Monday, July 28 2014 2:08 PM EDT2014-07-28 18:08:17 GMT
NWS: Macroburst hit north Phoenix with 100 mph winds
A macroburst with winds in excess of 100 mph hit north Phoenix Saturday night, snapping power poles, toppling trees and cutting power to 33,000 utility customers, the National Weather Service said.More >
Intense macrobursts can cause tornado-force damage of up to F3 intensity, the National Weather Service said after it confirmed the event. The Paradise Valley Hospital sustained rooftop damage.More >
Monday, July 28 2014 1:54 AM EDT2014-07-28 05:54:27 GMT
Authorities now say 14 people - including a 15-year-old - have been struck by lightning during rare summer thunderstorms that have swept through Southern California, injuring two critically.More >
A 20-year-old man died Sunday after lightning struck or rattled 13 people at a popular Los Angeles beach and a golfer on Catalina Island during summer thunderstorms that swept through Southern California, authorities said.More >