Parkway Village neighbors & businesses rally together after Monday’s tornado

Local News

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (localmemphis.com) – Monday’s EF-1 tornado ripped through areas of the Mid-South,  leaving damage to homes and business. Memphis Light, Gas and Water crews have about 600 people in the field, but many residents are turning to each other for support.

In Parkway Village, Carla Harris’ mother saw the full damage to her home after returning from the hospital. Her mom was getting ready to take her grandson to school when a tree fell on top of the house.

“She was like a step behind him. They were trying to get out together, but the tree caught her,” said Harris.

Her mother was trapped. Family members were able to pull her out. 

“The only way they could go about finding her was to try and hear her voice and make it through the debris. Just her saying, ‘I’m over here.’” Harris said, “Where the tree is, that’s where her bed is, was, and that’s all the way down to like a sausage patty. It’s down. How could she have made it through that?”

Harris’ mom had minor bumps and bruises. She stopped by the home Tuesday, and learned that the tree had even crushed the back of the home.

“Thank God she’s still alive. She’s still alive,” said Harris.

She is also grateful for the neighbors who came to help clear debris from the front of the house. 

Harris said, “I’m thankful that if this is what it takes to bring us together when nobody can get around it, your money can’t. ‘Well honey I don’t want my house destroyed,’ an act of God, that’s God showing who he is.”

Also thankful is Rickey Freman. He lives just blocks away. A tree fell in his front yard.

“When I got here, I noticed that there were three trees across the road and stuff. I saw the power was off,” said Freman.

His power was still off Tuesday, so he spent the day outside cleaning.

“I was raised in the country and stuff, so I’m used to being able to do to take a little bit and make a lot of it,” said Freman.

He said he wouldn’t have been able to do it alone. Neighbors and even strangers like John Ducrest came to help. Ducrest is a Home Depot Store Manager.

“We actually got three stores together and got about 16 people, a bunch of chainsaws and we’re just helping out. Clearing roads, clearing people’s driveways,” said Ducrest.

He said the damage was close to the store, affecting its employees and customers living in the area.

“This really hit close to home because it’s just south of our store. We knew that we just had to get together and help as quickly as we could,” said Ducrest.

For Rickey, it’s a kindness that came right on time.

“I needed help from the good Lord sending people here, because that He knows that have love, compassion and heart for other people,” said Freman.

MLGW said there is still extensive damage and repairs must be made before some areas can get power restored. 

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