KIMBERLY, Ala. (WIAT)- Even in its storm-ravaged shell, Greg Watts home is a beautiful building. It’s one of the oldest houses in Kimberly, built in the 1920’s. On April 28th, however, the home sustained substantial damage. A large oak tree fell on top of the house and the roof was blown off. “It sounded like a vacuum cleaner on suction,” said Watts, revisiting the home with two of his daughters on Tuesday. “It seems like yesterday, but then it seems like longer than that, too.”
He knew the home wouldn’t be rebuilt overnight. He said between insurance and the bank discussing money, progress has been put on hold for the time. “It’s just a long process,” Watts said. “Builders are kind of held hostage. They can only do so much and then they need money to pay for what they’ve done.”
Several hundred miles away, in northeast Nebraska, a community is experiencing the first stages of tornado recovery. Watts knows their pain, and said for those who suffered damage to put aside any pride and accept the open arms of their neighbors. “Those that didn’t get hit by the storm, go out and help others,” he said. “That sense of township, that sense of community makes it bearable.” As for Watts and his family of five, they’re renting a home in Hayden while repairs are made to their Kimberly house. His backyard was a popular place for pool parties during the heat of the summer, and Watts hopes to have everyone back over to his real home for July 4, 2015.