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'I Survived a Tornado!'

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Michelle Kemper Brownlow: Here in southeastern Pennsylvania, we don't get "big news" summer weather. Thunderstorms will leave us without electricity for a couple days, but that's usually it.

I Survived a Tornado

Last Thursday, June 24th, that all changed. We all changed. A tornado hit our house. The National Weather Service deemed it "straight-line winds," but the UPS guy who was up the street hunkered down in his truck will tell you different. Mere minutes after we came up from the basement, he was at my front door. "Is everybody OK?" he asked. "Looked like your house was dead center!"

When the storm started, my kids and I watched out the patio door as the swings on our cedar playset went wild. Then the hail came, followed by waves of water that flowed around the bottom of the closed door, over our feet and across the kitchen floor.I ran upstairs for towels, only to find similar waterfalls coming in both closed upstairs bathroom windows.

I came downstairs with more towels and was completely disoriented. I couldn't see out of the patio window. It appeared as though something pale yellow was covering it. Then I realized it was the combination of rain, hail and winds like I have never seen before. At that moment, my eldest yelled, "Mom, I think we just lost the playset!" That's when we headed to the basement. We stayed there until the "freight-train roar" quieted and the rains stopped.

Our playset was gone, and so was our neighbors'. When I stuck my head out the door to greet the doting UPS man, I yelled to the kids, "I found the playset!" Some of it was on the front sidewalk, but the rest was across the street! The sliding board was three houses away. Three of our six big trees had cracked in two, and our stainless steel mack-daddy gas grill had taken a trek across our deck and down the stairs!

"Hope you are OK. We are fine. House is fine. But everything outside the house is GONE!" That was the message I left for my husband, who works only six miles away. I didn't know if his building had been hit or not. He came home within the hour to see streets filled with camera-toting Amish Country paparazzi and a property that looked like a war zone and had no electricity. But his most prized possessions were safe and sound!

There is no doubt in my mind that we survived a tornado, and that there is a man in the clouds who deserves a mack-daddy "THANK YOU!"

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1 comments so far | Post a comment now
Maragaret Weiden March 19, 2011, 5:08 PM

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