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10-year-old’s iPad alarm saves Louisville family during tornado

Tony Cambron said his daughter has not yet realized that her quick thinking may have saved her family’s life.
Published: Apr. 14, 2022 at 8:35 PM EDT
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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - A father credits his 10-year-old daughter with saving the lives of their family members before a tornado destroyed their home in Fern Creek on Wednesday night.

“She might have saved us,” Tony Cambron said. “It’s hard for me to recollect exactly where I was when this happened before she said something, but all four of us including my 3-year-old were in this room.”

Cambron’s home is ground zero in the Glenmary neighborhood in Fern Creek. His house was one of the hardest hit among his neighbors, who also suffered significant damage.

“As you can see, people picking up, a lot of that is my house,” Cambron said as he pointed to pieces of his roof several yards away on Thursday.

Cambron said he knew severe weather was on the way, but he had no idea his house would be directly in the path of a tornado. He said his 10-year-old daughter, who was on her iPad, was also concerned about the weather. She was eating ravioli, which was still sitting in Cambron’s now-exposed kitchen on Thursday after the storm.

“The storm, as you can see, came this way,” he explained.

(Story continues below video)

A father credits his 10-year-old daughter with saving the lives of their family members before a tornado destroyed their home in Fern Creek on Wednesday night.

His daughter’s iPad began to sound warning alarms about the approaching storm, and Cambron said it was then that she got scared and begged that they seek shelter. He said when his wife hurried towards their basement door, she was grabbing food for the kids.

Thirty seconds made or broke the situation.

“I actually saw, before my wife was able to get the basement door shut, I saw that storm just blow through my house,” Cambron said.

They were only in the basement for about 18 minutes, but he said it felt like an eternity.

“You kept hearing things fall and fall and fall, and I couldn’t tell, is that my garage, is that my cabinet?” Cambron said.

When a neighbor knocked on the family’s door, they eventually left their basement out.

Cambron said his daughter has not yet realized that her quick thinking may have saved her family’s life.

“You think about all these scenarios and people are like, ‘Why are you so upbeat?’ and I’m like, ‘We’re alive,’” Cambron said.

Two doors down, Tammy Faust said she was sitting in a corner room in her home when the tornado ripped through. Initially, she said she thought it was an explosion.

“It wasn’t but minutes it got dark,” Faust said. “The power went off, and all the windows shattered, and I tried to find my way down to the basement.”

Grateful to have her life and see the sun shining, Faust spent Thursday picking up the debris in her yard and cutting down fallen trees.

“The house is a mess, but we are alive, so we are happy,” Faust said.

Around the corner, Chris Swanks was counting his blessings because his two young sons, wife, and dog made it out of the storm unscathed.

“(We were) just watching the news, and they were saying it’s about to be coming, and it was just seconds after that,” Swanks said. “It was probably 20 minutes or so we’re down there (in the basement) hearing all the wind, and then we come out and it’s just devastation everywhere.”

Despite the damage, neighbors told WAVE News they’re stunned everyone survived the tornado without a scratch, especially because they say they never heard the tornado warning sirens.

According to MetroSafe, the warning sirens went off everywhere in the county, but they are not meant to be heard inside.

The WAVE Weather team said it’s important to have multiple ways to receive warnings about severe weather, including the WAVE Weather app and a weather radio.

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