Tornado damage in area: Home damaged, trees down
by Mark Ledbetter
Jan 24, 2012 | 3698 views |  0 comments | 10 10 recommendations | email to a friend | print
Phyllis Wesley and her son stand in front of their house, which was damaged in an early Monday morning storm. Mark Ledbetter/The Daily Home
Phyllis Wesley and her son stand in front of their house, which was damaged in an early Monday morning storm. Mark Ledbetter/The Daily Home
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TALLADEGA COUNTY — Phyllis Wesley didn’t report to work as usual Monday morning.

“I’d rather have snow and ice any day,” she said.

Awakened by her cousin’s phone call at 5:45 a.m., Wesley said she heard the wind blowing and went to her safe-room, a closet in the den.

The morning light later revealed several trees in her yard had been blown over, damaging the front fence. A few sheets of metal roofing were loosened or blown over the house and landed in the back yard.

The house Wesley lives in, located at 4449 Desoto Caverns Parkway, is her “old home place,” the place where she grew up. After living up north for 30 years, Wesley moved back into the house six years ago. She is now employed as a case manager for SAFE in Sylacauga.

Rocky Baer, a representative from the National Weather Service who was on the scene, said unofficial preliminary estimates suggest an F0 tornado. The lay of the trees suggests a “spin up.” He said no official determination could be made until after data was gathered at the weather service’s office.

A few trees were downed on land between Mt. Olive Baptist Church and Wesley’s house. Slight damage to a mobile home behind the church resulted from a falling tree top.

Desoto Caverns reported minimal damage. Two roadside signs were pushed over.

Wesley said her house survived another tornado when she was 14. “It jumped over the house,” she said. “That one sounded like a freight train.”

Contact Mark Ledbetter at mledbetter@dailyhome.com.