Residents return to homes damaged in Granbury tornado

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by JOBIN PANICKER

Bio | Email | Follow: @jobinpnews

WFAA

Posted on May 18, 2013 at 6:46 PM

Updated Thursday, Dec 5 at 9:30 AM

GRANBURY — For the first time since the Wednesday night tornadoes, victims from the worst-hit areas near Granbury got to return home.

Not everyone was sure their home would still be there.

Hood County Sheriff Roger Deeds said deputies were still controlling access to the Rancho Brazos subdivision on Saturday evening and curfews remain in place.

But about 160 residents were allowed in with a permit and an escort earlier in the day after waiting in line outside the Granbury Church of Christ.

"I'm looking forward to going in my house, but I know it's going to be hot," one woman said.

She and others, like Linda Wilson, were understandably anxious after not seeing their homes in two days, and they are filled with

"Uncertainty... insecurity... not knowing what to do next," Wilson said.

The homeowners filtered inside the church with the goal of gaining a yellow permit to enter the disaster zone.

"This is going to be a traumatic day for the residents first time getting back in there and seeing it," Sheriff Deeds said.

Melanie Flores came early, anxious to see her home... or what's left of it.

The not knowing, the wondering, waiting, not knowing was probably the worst," she said.

Rancho Brazos was heavily controlled, and the news media were not invited. Some residents shared photos and video clips.

Sheriff Deeds said the Rancho Brazos subdivision is not liveable, at least in the near future.

Linda Wilson needed a prayer for strength on Saturday. "I feel like I'm so alone," she said. "I know I've got the Lord with me."

An 8 p.m. curfew remained in effect Saturday, and Sheriff Deeds said it would likely continue for several days.

The American Red Cross set up a disaster resource center at the Church of Christ in Granbury, and Allstate just opened a catastrophe claims center.

There was some good news at the Granbury Animal Shelter. The facility started out with about 200 stray dogs and cats brought in after the tornado hit Wednesday night.

At its main facility, the shelter was down to just 17 dogs by Saturday evening, and out of those, seven have been identified and are just waiting for their owners to pick them up when they are able.

"It was beautiful," said Hood County Animal Control spokeswoman Sherri Rose. "We reunited so many of our animals with their families."

The animal control agency has two off-site locations in addition to its main facility where it is keeping some of the strays.

The Humane Society of North Texas is running short on space after taking in more than 100 animals displaced by the Hood County tornado.

Through Sunday, it is offering half-off all adoptions. Dogs normally cost $85 to $150; the regular price for a feline adoption is $85 to $95.

As of late Saturday afternoon, only 37 pets had been adopted — about what the Humane Society sees on a regular Saturday.

E-mail jpanicker@wfaa.com

 

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