Tornado survivor who lost family prepares to move into new home - News, Weather & Sports

Tornado survivor who lost family prepares to move into new home

Amanda Jackson Amanda Jackson
Carol and Terry Jackson, and Daylynn Jackson (Source: Amanda Jackson) Carol and Terry Jackson, and Daylynn Jackson (Source: Amanda Jackson)
Amanda Jackson's new home. Amanda Jackson's new home.

CHELSEA, IN (WAVE) – It's been a long year for one woman who lost everything in the March 2 tornadoes, including her four year old child and grandparents. This weekend Amanda Jackson is moving into her brand new home, built entirely by volunteers.

Jackson describes this time as bittersweet. She says she is so thankful to the Southern Indiana Salvation Army, VROC (Volunteers Rebuilding Our Community), and hundreds of strangers who have jumped in to help in this time of need.

"I just remember the day like it was yesterday," said Jackson. 

Three wooden crosses stand side-by-side in Jackson's front yard. Two are for her grandparents, Terry and Carol Jackson, and one is for her son, Daylynn.

"He was a good boy, very good boy," said Jackson. 

All three lost their lives on March 2, 2012 when a tornado ripped through the small town of Chelsea. Along with her grandparents, Jackson and two of her four children were huddled in the bathroom. 

"It was just like you sat there and all of sudden you heard it and you could hear stuff hitting the side of the house and then the TV and lights went out and then you could feel it just peel the house and the next thing I knew we were in the air," said Jackson. 

Jackson said she thought this was the end.

"You could feel stuff hitting you and I just kept thinking hold on, grab something, but there was nothing to grab and something hit me right here and that's when I let go of Daylynn," said Jackson. 

In just seconds it was calm again.

"I knew from the moment I got up," said Jackson. "He was already gone."

Since having to say goodbye to her only son and grandparents she loved, Jackson knows even though it's not easy, she must stay strong for her three daughters. 

"You have your life before March 2nd and now we have a life after March 2nd, nothing is the same, nothing," said Jackson. 

This weekend she will move her family into a brand new home on the same property her life was changed forever. Volunteers from across the nation have traveled Chelsea to help Jackson rebuild a life for her family.

"There's a lot of good people out there," said Jackson. 

They are people who provided Jackson with a glimpse of hope. Just what she needed to move forward. 

"This is just where we are meant to be," said Jackson.

This Sunday, the Southern Indiana Salvation Army and several other groups that helped in the building process will be there to dedicate the home to the Jackson family. The ceremony will take place at 3:00 p.m.

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