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Dad recalls tornado sweeping jeep off the ground with his children inside

A family is more than lucky after their jeep was picked up by a tornado Wednesday.
Published: Apr. 15, 2022 at 5:29 PM EDT
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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - A family is more than lucky after their jeep was picked up by a tornado Wednesday.

“The whole car was surrounded with just black,” Tony McBee told WAVE News.

He and his nine and 12-year-old boys were eating at Chick-fil-A on Bardstown Road in Fern Creek when his son pointed at the storm.

McBee wasn’t convinced it was a tornado, but rather a bad storm so they decided to head home for cover.

But less than a minute after, the tornado caught up with them.

“The two cars that were in front of me just completely disappeared,” McBee said.

From there, his jeep came off the road, went airborne and was at the wind’s mercy. He recalled the debris hitting his car. He still has a shingle stuck in his window.

“We were definitely in the air, because I was pressing on the gas and we were going nowhere,” he said. “The movies don’t do it justice. When you’re in it, it’s so much darker; the sheer power that it had.”

The jeep touched back down facing north in the southbound lane. McBee darted towards his mother’s house in Glenmary to get away.

The tornado was right on their tail.

“There’s debris, trees, mailboxes, you name it,” he said. “Anything you can imagine flying everywhere through the air.”

When he looked in his rear view mirror, he saw chunks of one of the hardest hit homes on Bohannon Station Road being ripped apart and flying behind him.

“I had just went through there when that roof was coming off,” he said.

His 12-year-old son called their grandmother to get the door unlocked so they could run in for safety. Her front door was blocked by two trees. The family had to run around the back.

McBee said the panic hit his children once they were inside. Once on their way home, they passed by the two cars that had disappeared before them. His 9-year-old son became emotional, wondering if those people were as lucky as they were.

“My oldest son asked, ‘Dad how are we still alive?’ And I said, ‘By the grace of God.’”

WAVE — Louisville and Southern Indiana's NBC affiliate. Follow us on Twitter & Instagram...
WAVE — Louisville and Southern Indiana's NBC affiliate. Follow us on Twitter & Instagram @wave3news.(WAVE)

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