Odessa residents under boil order deal with storm damage - KCTV5 News

Odessa residents under boil order deal with storm damage

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How the damage in Odessa looked on Thursday afternoon. (KCTV) How the damage in Odessa looked on Thursday afternoon. (KCTV)

Fifteen miles to the east of Oak Grove where the EF-3 tornado hit on Monday is Odessa, where there is extensive damage.

Homes, churches and even the town's water plant were hit. All of the damage in Odessa has made cleaning up a slow process and the damage to the water plant means the residents are under a boil order.

Amanda Heatherington and her daughter were here at their house Monday night when they heard the sirens go off.

The two hid in a closet as the tornado rolled over them, leaving behind a trail of debris in their wake.

Now, Heatherington, her husband and her two children have spent the last three days repairing their house and getting a little help in the process.

“A lot of waiting, a lot of phone calls,” said Heatherington. “A lot of people coming by and dropping off food and bottled water and offering help. And we have our neighbors here right now. We actually just met some of them for the first time today, so that has been a nice experience; getting to meet people for the first time and getting to know our neighbors.”

On Thursday, some volunteers continued to work in the town.

Volunteers from the Southern Baptist Disaster Relief helped clear away a few trees at a house and everything that was once scattered was put in neat piles along Rachel Wells’ tangled fence.

It took the volunteers about an hour, but after the storms hit Monday night, people in Odessa had no idea what they’d see when the clouds cleared and the sun came out.

“It literally chopped off the top of the trees,” Wells said. “I didn’t even realize they were in the back yard until after it had stopped. I didn’t even hear them hit the ground because the wind was so loud and that’s what I heard. Everyone says it sounds like a train. Well, I didn’t hear no train, but I mean it was like ‘a big bubble coming down on you’ type of sound.”

“We just finished a job this afternoon, early this afternoon, and there were probably 14 others – 15,” said Charles McCrary, volunteer coordinator. “Everybody gave the lady a hug and she said, ‘You know, I just feel like family.’ So, that was pretty sweet for us. I know it’s emotional for them and it’s emotional for us, too.”

Wells told KCTV5 she is going to keep some of the wood and even give it to other family members who were hit in Oak Grove.

She added that said a church in town had been making food for people who need it so that people who have no way to boil water can have a hot, "home-cooked" meal.

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