Mayfield, Kentucky, tornado survivors describe heart-wrenching moments before, after twisters
Kentucky residents describe searching through rubble after homes were leveled by tornado
MAYFIELD, Ky. – Survivors in Mayfield, Kentucky, described the moments before and after a deadly tornado ripped through their town.
"I was in my bedroom, and my grandmam she came in yelling," Blake Jacoway, told Fox News. "All we heard was a loud train noise … just rumbling."
"I felt like I was going to die. I didn't think, we was going to make it out of here," Jacoway continued.
Tornadoes ripped through multiple states Friday and Saturday, flipping telephone poles, trees and cars. Kentucky was hit hardest, leaving at least 74 dead and around 100 missing, Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear said Monday.
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"Undoubtedly there will be more," Beshear said as the search through wreckage continued.
In Mayfield, buildings and houses were flattened.
"I was at work, we was doing the normal stuff," Mayfield local, Ja-sean Kocatow told Fox News. When he started getting tornado warnings on his phone, he left work, went home and changed out of his work clothes.
Kocatow was looking out his hallway window when he saw "coming out of the street, just stuff just flying in the air." He took shelter in his basement with his family and some friends.
Immediately after the tornado passed, Kaitlynn Kemp went to her grandfather and uncle's nearby sawmill.
"We were out there in the pouring rain looking for bodies," she told Fox News. "We didn't expect to find anybody."
As she searched through the mud and rubble, Kemp said she "didn't know if you're going to pick out something and a body was going to be under it or what was going to be under there."
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Kemp found members of an Amish family she knew well. The parents and two of their five kids died, Kemp told Fox News.
A Mayfield police officer, Jasper Mundy, described efforts to help Kemp that night.
"There was a guy trapped under the house, but he was deceased after getting the house off the top of him," he said.
The police officer told Fox News numerous people were pulled from under rubble.
"I can't get it out of my head. This morning we went to church and I just saw it," Kemp said. "Last weekend, I was around all of them at their Christmas party, I played cornhole with them, the kids were running around playing with everybody."
Kemp's mother, Danielle Kemp, said the community was already burdened with poverty.
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"I mean a lot of these people … this is all they had," she said.
"It's basically going to be starting over," Tommy Anderson told Fox News as he sifted through the rubble of his house. "This is our home, we raised our kids here and then our grandkids."
"But we are alive," Anderson told Fox News. "And well. We have hope for tomorrow."