March 2nd, less than a year after the horrific tornadoes swept through the region, we got slammed again. This time, the storms hit even closer to home. Friday afternoon a co-worker and I headed to lunch in Cleveland before a meeting at the Division office. It had started raining on the way to lunch and by the time we left, the sky was sooo dark and strange looking. We pulled into the office parking lot and the admin was yelling for us to GET INSIDE! We all huddled in the back of the building away from the windows/doors until the “all clear.” The storm didn’t come that close to us but once it passed, another co-worker called and said Ooltewah had been hit and the road to our subdivision was closed. I think I had a mini heart attack. Adam had left a little early to go pick Henderson up at daycare and was down near Chattanooga/Ooltewah. I called him and he was getting off our exit. He was able to make it to our house and luckily, we had no damage! Our power was knocked out for about 6-7 hours but we will take that over damage any day. About 3 miles north of our subdivision houses were completely flattened. The tornado had come up over the hill and just left a huge path of destruction. I made it home about an hour later and right after I went by they closed the Ooltewah exit. There were cops and ambulances everywhere. We had tickets to the Brad Paisley concert in Knoxville and I really wanted to still go. We were still under severe tornado watch until about 10pm that evening but my theory was whether we were there or not, a tornado was still going to come if it was coming.
So I talked a disgruntled Adam into leaving and we made the trip to Knoxville, which was also under a tornado watch. The concert was great!! Scotty McCreary opened for the Band Perry who opened for BRAD PAISLEY!! I also like to go to Brad’s concert when I can, nice to support my fellow West Virginians. Carrie Underwood also made a surprise appearance, it made my night! She is so pretty and I love their duets.
While we were at the concert, another tornado did come through the Ooltewah area though, again no damage to our house. By the time we got back home, around midnight, the power was back on.
Saturday morning we drove around the town and it is so sickening to see the damage that was done. It is truly a miracle that no one was killed – had the storm been 2 hours later, kids would have been home from school and parents from work.