Couple hides under bed during tornado as house collapses

Gregg Williams
Gregg Williams

By Elizabeth Donatelli - bio | email

EMINENCE, KY (WAVE) - The National Weather Service has confirmed that an EF-3 tornado touched down in Henry County, KY at 4:59 a.m. Monday. It began more than one mile southeast of Eminence and ended three miles east. It destroyed three houses in a row. A man and wife inside hid under their bed as their house collapsed around them. They survived.

The tornado only took two minutes with winds up to 140 miles-per-hour to flatten Gregg Williams' house.

"I'm just wondering if there's any safe place," said Williams who lost a car in a tornado in the 70s. "I sure don't want to live in Kansas or anything, but I'm beginning to wonder about Kentucky not being in the path."

Williams and his wife were inside their home when it hit.

"The ceiling collapsed on us," said Williams. "Suddenly we were in the bed and the next thing we knew felt like we were outside."

They hid under the bed, which is now covered by a pile of debris.

"We crawled," said Williams. "Literally we crawled. The roof was dead on top of us. My legs were pinned a little bit and I was afraid to shake anything. I was afraid it would collapse more."

Williams and his wife crawled inside their car.

"I start shaking," said Williams. "She said, 'Are you cold?' I said, 'Yeah.' I didn't want to tell her I was scared to death."

His neighbor, Carl Hardesty, prayed with his family inside a closet during the storm. His home was spared, but he couldn't believe his eyes, when he looked across the street.

"Lightening flashed and my wife said that house is gone," said Hardesty. "I said, 'no. It can't be. We didn't have that kind of storm.' She said, 'Oh yeah, it's gone.' And sure enough, next couple lightning flashes, it was gone."

The Williams lives, uprooted, like the tree in their front yard.

"It's just kind of surreal," said Williams. "Did that really happen? Is that really my house? Yeah, I'm afraid it is."

Williams has insurance, but says he doubts it will cover everything. He was getting ready to retire, but does not think he'll be able to do that now.

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