Tornado cleanup continues in Arlington

Arlington relief

Credit: WFAA

Arlington homeowners banded together on Saturday to clean up and clear out storm debris.

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by DEBBIE DENMON

WFAA

Posted on April 8, 2012 at 12:07 AM

Updated Thursday, Dec 5 at 3:20 AM

ARLINGTON — We now know there were 16 tornadoes that tore through North Texas on Tuesday.

The two newest were confirmed by the National Weather Service in southern Denton and northern Kaufman county.

Arlington was one of the hardest-hit areas; more than 500 homes and businesses were damaged.

The massive clean-up effort continued on Saturday. Getting rid of trees the tornado toppled proved to be a daunting task, but men and women alike shouldered the responsibility in one Arlington neighborhood.

"Before this thing happened, I mean this street was just beautiful... nice trees everywhere and everything, but I just couldn't believe it," said Artas Walker, who was away in Mississippi when the storm struck.

He returned home to see his home covered in blue tarp.

But Walker is now part of the community effort to help soften the blow of the EF-2 tornado that touched down here.

"It's just been rough," he said. "Basketball goal gone... the jacuzzi... all that's gone, but you know what the most important thing is? Nobody got hurt. Nobody got killed. That's just a blessing."

And there are so many blessings, considering there will be another birthday for the family in one home on this street. Faith is building in the aftermath of the storm.

A cross remained intact even though the wood around it was damaged. Everyone on the block and beyond has a new found respect for the power of nature.

The Red Cross showed up to help, along with members of various churches in the community.

Volunteers dropped off ready-to-eat food, giving storm victims the fuel they need to keep going.

And with planks of wood still pierced in rooftops, it may be a while before the clean-up is complete.

E-mail ddenmon@wfaa.com

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