Montgomery Tornado Victim Still Trying to Recover

by Eileen Jones - bio | email

Folks at a Montgomery automobile shop had every reason to be alarmed when they heard a tornado was in our area. Five months ago, a tornado hit their shop and they didn't want to go through that ordeal again.

So, when word of severe weather went out over the air waves, it got the attention of folks at the auto repair shop.

Matt Woodham is an owner. "We started shutting bay doors and we started getting people inside." That's because if severe weather has hit once - it could happen again.

We were there when Woodham visited the morning after the tornado hit the repair shop on May 8th. There was still dismay and despair about the rubble that had fallen from the building. But now, five months later, it's all changed. "Everything's different. everything's been redone," says Woodham.

Take the shop's office for example. The tornado left it in shambles. Woodham seemed sad seeing it in daylight the next morning. "It's pretty much ruined." But now, there are no complaints, except maybe for one. "We're still working with the insurance agency to see how much it's going to cost us," says Woodham.

He says they submitted the lowest estimates to the insurance company and it gave them the OK, but now he says the insurance company won't pay. Owner Jim Woodham says he's now out of a lot of money. "How much do you think you've lost in all of this? About $190,000. Are you kidding me? And, the contractor hasn't been paid all of his money yet."

This is disturbing to Jim Woodham who began servicing automobiles at a Texaco station with $500.00 forty-two years ago when he got out of the Navy. "Makes you scared because you've worked at this all your life. I put my heart and all my money in it and now, all of a sudden, like the tornado blows this way. We didn't have nothing to do with that. That was the Lord's work and they just haven't done what they - what the insurance policy says they're suppose to do."

In spite of his troubles, Woodham is planning a grand opening at his shop on Troy Highway on October 18th, and says he's going to give away 3 sets of tires.