Loyd family loses everything but their lives, saves friend
Wednesday, May 7, 2014 1:00 AM
A family of 10 lost everything after an EF-4 tornado flattened their houses last week.
The Loyd family lost everything when the tornado touched down last Monday. Above, an Ultrastar RV was tossed on its side.
Linda Loyd was in her Brooksville Road home with nine other members of her family when the EF-4 tornado touched down.
"We had heard the alerts and had put the kids in the bathroom," she said. "Forty-five minutes later it hit us."
Loyd said she was standing on her front porch when she started seeing debris falling.
The rest of the family piled into the bathroom and the adjoining hallway as the twister struck.
Loyd said it lasted for over three minutes.
"That's when I stopped counting," she said. "It sounded like a train continuously blowing."
During those three minutes the Loyd home was pelted with debris.
Two of Loyd's grandchildren were even picked up five feet in the air by the tornado.
"We got them back in the tub," she said.
When it was all over no one was seriously injured but Loyd said her right foot was trapped.
"We were able to get most of the others out quickly," she said. "It took an hour to get my son-in-law, who is in a wheelchair, out."
"My son Larry was one of the first out and the first thing he saw was the remains of the neighbor's home.
"Then he heard someone hollering," she said.
Larry followed the noise to Alecia Coleman, the neighbor, who was taking shelter in a bathroom when the twister threw her through a wall and into a mud hole. She survived.
The Loyds lost nearly everything, including Linda's home, her nearby son's home, a tornado-proof building, several trailers and several vehicles, including several motorcycles and an Ultrastar recreational vehicle which now rests on its side.
"The Ultrastar was the first thing I saw," Loyd said.
The family is currently residing at a Starkville hotel until the Federal Emergency Management Agency arrives.
They also plan to rebuild.