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Granbury Tornado Survivors More Thankful Than Ever

(credit: KTVT/KTXA) Joel Thomas
Joel is an Emmy Award winning journalist with more than 15 year...
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GRANBURY (CBSDFW.COM) - The signs of the deadly Granbury tornado that killed six people still litter the rolling hills on the outskirts of the city. There are rusting hulks of cars and concrete slabs where homes once stood. They are signs of some people’s resolve broken by the ferocious storms.

Many signs of the deadly tornado's impact remain in Granbury. (credit: Joel Thomas)

Many signs of the deadly tornado’s impact remain in Granbury. (credit: Joel Thomas)

Granbury resident Christy Green said she is glad to be here.

“I’m so happy to be back home,” Green said from inside her newly completed house. “I don’t mind it at all.”

Six months ago Green and her then 17-year old son nearly died on this very spot. They were hiding in a closet when their home was sucked into a tornado.

(credit: Joel Thomas)

(credit: Joel Thomas)

“I can remember going around the whole entire house, stuff smashing me in the back head and the horrific noises that we heard,” Green recalled. “I can remember the echoing in the house when it came through the house. It was really bad.”

There was so much debris Green said glass and metal washes to the surface every time it rains, forcing them to break out rakes to clean it up.

They are scarred by the experience, outside and inside. Her son, Dillon Whitehead, has scars on his legs. Green has a scar on her forehead from what she thinks was a board flying into her. And the horrors of that day are only a thought away at any time.

“It’s kind of still in my mind, you know,” Whitehead said. “It’s kind of in there. You kind of dream about it. It’s still there.”

They stayed with friends while they rebuilt their home on the same spot.

“They had a really nice house, three times the size of ours,” Green said of her months long stay with friends. “But it just wasn’t the same. I mean, even though we were comfortable there, once we got back home you just can’t imagine the relief of the stress. It was like we never left.”

They finished the house just in time for Thanksgiving and they returned a thankful and closer family.

“A lot closer,” Green said, smiling. “And we’re a lot nicer now! You never know when that day is going to be your last day.

“I’m thankful for my life, my friends, being able to go to school,” Whitehead said. “To just live really.”

Among the debris in Granbury there are thankful people. Their resolve may be tattered, but it is not broken.

“I’m thankful to be here and be back home and be with my family,” Green said. “I’m very blessed.”

(©2013 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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