GRANBURY — One year ago Thursday, an EF4 tornado tore through the Rancho Brazos Estates neighborhood in Granbury. Six were killed and the neighborhood was left debris ridden.
Today, it no longer looks like a devastated war zone, but it's not a community fully recovered either.
On the ground, there are still untouched concrete slabs where homes once stood and uprooted trees litter lawns.
The sounds of active construction scenes are like music to the ears of the Granbury residents.
April Mitchell is the executive director of Hood County's largest non-profit, Mission Granbury. She says its important for Texans to realize rebuilding Granbury continues to be a long-term effort. Over 270 families were affected by the tornado. With the help of more than 2,400 volunteers, cleanup alone took several months. Mitchell says volunteers are now dedicated to rebuilding.
"It takes awhile to build a house," she said. "It takes a while to build people's confidence up."
Mitchell said her agency has assisted more than 400 people affected by last year's tornado. Of that number, 269 were left homeless after the tornado. Two-hundred-and-nine of the homes were under insured or not insured. And many couldn't qualify for affordable housing through Habitat for Humanity.
Fifteen families made the tough decision to not return to Granbury.
But, there are a lot of things to celebrate one year later.
The community is stronger and grateful for the more than $600,000 in donations they received considering they didn't qualify for state or federal aid.
At 3 p.m. Thursday, the city will honor the lives of the six people who lost their lived by planting trees in their honor. A children's festival will also be held.