Birthright continues recovery after severe tornado damage - WSFA.com: News Weather and Sports for Montgomery, AL.

Birthright continues recovery after severe tornado damage

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BIRTHRIGHT, TX (KLTV) -

The preliminary damage assessment continues to grow for the town of Birthright, but it's estimated to be well into the millions for that East Texas community, demolished by a tornado.

It happened on Thursday night at the small community of Birthright just north of Sulphur Springs in Hopkins county.

Red cross and volunteer crews were out in force cleaning up and repairing torn roofs across the community.

"Anything major or destroyed , we're hitting those first to see what those families need. If they need a hot meal or a place to go we want to make sure we're there," says red cross worker Dawn Morgan.

Even red cross workers were staggered at the scope of damage.

"The Birthright community , 70 homes were affected in some degree. We had 3 homes destroyed , two of them mobile," Morgan says.

David Petrea's son was hit by debris when their roof was torn off.

"He got hit right in the side of the face by the stove pipe. His girlfriend and my wife was all trying to get to the smallest room in the house and my wife opened up the bathroom door and the roof was gone," he says.

He shielded his family with mattresses.

"I told them to just go back in the corner and I got some mattresses and put on them," Petrea says.

The National weather service arrived to assess the damage.

"When we come across damage we talk to the property owner and we try to find out what kind of warning they got, what kind of information they got during the event," says Meteorologist Dennis Cavanaugh.

Every business in the downtown area was damaged, and power continues to be out for all residents.

"It's spread out over a large area so getting out to all the rural county roads , different streets making sure we haven't missed anybody is a concern," Morgan says.

Red cross workers are also working with homeowners who were not insured to help them get materials to repair their damaged homes.

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