Hartselle family recalls close call with EF-2 tornado

D'Quan Lee reporting.
Published: Mar. 25, 2023 at 11:10 PM CDT

HARTSELLE, Ala. (WAFF) - ”Aw man it’s just unreal what we’ve been through over the last 24 hours.”

On Rhodes Street NW in Hartselle, the path of destruction left behind by an EF-2 tornado was apparent. The late-night storm killed one person, and left Faron Weeks and his family with a heart-stopping close call.

“I stayed up until about 12:20 a.m., and I went to bed,” Weeks said. “About the minute I got in the bed, I started hearing the sirens. And then I started hearing hearing things hit my roof.”

With wind speeds up to 115 miles per hour, the tornado caused this large tree on your screen to crash onto his home, directly above where their granddaughter was sleeping.

“My wife and I got up and went to the grandchildren’s bedrooms and got our 11-year-old grandson up and then we went to get our 8-year-old granddaughter up and we tried to open the door to her room. It was closed and she doesn’t remember closing it.”

His granddaughter’s room had been riddled with insulation, sheetrock, and a detached ceiling fan. With the child in the middle of it all, still fast asleep and completely unharmed.

“Once she woke up and had seen what was going on, she was very hysterical.”

Faron and his family immediately got her to safety. Once the storm had passed, they got out to see how bad the damage was.

Fast forward to Saturday afternoon, and the Hartselle community has been instrumental in working to clean up the destruction left behind by the tornado.

“The whole neighborhood showed up. And it’s amazing the work that’s been done here today. One time there was probably 25 to 30 people here helping today. And we truly appreciate them. We ask for the Lord’s blessing upon all of them for coming here and helping us out. This community spirit is what’s awesome right now. It’s overwhelming.”

Click Here to Subscribe on YouTube: Watch the latest WAFF 48 news, sports & weather videos on our YouTube channel!