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Dallas Tornado – A Year in Review

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Dallas Tornado - A Year in Review

It’s been a year! And I mean that both literally and figuratively.

On October 20, 2019, I found myself rushing my children down into the wine cellar for protection, sitting my husband inside the kitchen doors, and using my legs to hold those same doors shut so that we would not be sucked into the vortex of the EF-3 tornado that hit Preston hollow that night.

People ask how long it lasted, and I truly do not know. Three or four minutes? Whatever the answer, every moment was packed with pure terror. My entire family is still suffering from varying degrees of PTSD as a result; however, we are finally able to truly talk about it with some confidence that there is light at the end of this long tunnel.

First and foremost, there are so many people to thank. God bless our neighbors that night who came out of their homes and guided us with flashlights to each other and to safety. God bless our great friends, The Ericksons, who came over the next day and sat in our front yard so looters would not enter while we moved all that we could salvage out. God bless the St. Mark’s volunteers who came through and cut paths through the trees blocking our front doors and streets. This is what community is all about, and I will never forget the kindness extended to us during this process.

I still remember showing up to the Hilton Park Cities that first night immediately after the storm. My youngest son had the wherewithal to book us a room and was swooping into the neighborhood to pick us up before we even had time to object. I arrived in my favorite Lanz nightgown covered in glass and debris and despite holes in the sleeves I did not have a cut on me. A true miracle. You know the front desk staff was so perplexed as to what I had gotten myself in to that night as I made my way to the front desk to check in.

For the next five nights we found ourselves in less comfortable accommodations as we packed up our suitcases and moved from hotel to hotel along both Stemmons Freeway and Northwest Highway that had space to accommodate us. As smart as we were to get a hotel that first night, we hadn’t considered anything beyond that point, and the Hilton was entirely booked with fellow Preston Hollow tornado victims. Insurance would now be in charge of finding us permanent/temporary housing to live in. Can you imagine the fate of your living situation being in the hands of a random insurance agent?

I would never have guessed it would take 11 months to settle our insurance claim before finally being able to start on the rebuilding of our home.  I cannot wait to get back into our Preston Hollow neighborhood, and even though we do not have trees, most of us are rebuilding and moving back in. It is great fun to meet with my terrific design team and builder and resurrect our home. I cannot wait to show you how we are progressing.

Thank you for listening.

Christy BerryOctober 20, 2020