Middle Tennessee tornado survivors glad to be alive as they pick up the pieces of their community

Updated: Mar. 3, 2020 at 10:34 PM CST
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EAST NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WMC) - Three survivors spoke with WMC Action News 5 Tuesday night each with their own incredible stories after tornadoes raided through Tennessee overnight.

The damage is staggering.

“It made the house a big boom. The windows here busted out. The windows in the back 4 or 5 windows broke out,” said 08-year-old Delano Ridley.

Ridley whose birthday just so happened to be Tuesday and is recently recovering from a hip replacement, didn’t know what to think.

“Really didn’t have time to be scared Lord what has happened,” said Ridley.

A tornado that destroyed much of her East Nashville neighborhood, businesses so damaged it’s hard to tell what they were, destruction everywhere you looked. Cars smashed, power lines down all over and crews working hard to restore power.

A halfway house in the area was left damaged with the front porch and roof on the ground. Dustin France managed to squeeze out of the building after he picked up a few belongings Tuesday. He was inside when the storm hit.

“It sounded like a freight train," said France. "I come outside it was raining lightning. The roof had collapsed down on the porch. I couldn’t get in or out.”

It was dark just before 1 a.m. -- a nightmare.

The owner of the house has a place for him to stay while the structure is being repaired.

Another storm victim was in his apartment complex filled with people at the time of the tornado.

“I open my blinds and I just see it coming this way. You could hear the wind coming closer and closer,” said Gokul Divi.

Divi said it was so loud he could barely hear his roommate screaming. They ran to the bathroom thinking it was the end.

“I reached for my phone to call my Mom and my Dad ‘hey I love you’. I don’t know what’s going to happen. I was just lime frozen almost," he said.

Miraculously workers told us everyone in the apartments got out alive.

All of the people we talked with were in pretty good spirits considering their situation. They all just said they were glad to be alive

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