Father rescues children from wind damaged home

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ST. LOUIS (KTVI) – A St. Louis father and his three young sons narrowly escaped Sunday’s wind storm with their lives.

They were in his mother's home on in the 3000 block of James Cool Papa Bell in North St. Louis when the roof came off.

It didn’t even seem like a major storm to people in the neighborhood:  no real dark clouds, no heavy rains, just that wind -- the high wind -- that took this roof off this house, with Chris Walker and his 3 sons, ages 4, 7, and 9, and his uncle inside.  They all ran for cover.

No one was seriously hurt.

“Just the lights flickered then it was loud boom, like a train wreck,” Walker said.

It felt as if his sons were caught out on the tracks: in this case the room at the top of the stairs where the roof came off his mother’s house.

The roof above them disappeared as exterior bricks rained down into the house and covered the stairs.

Walker’s mother was born in the house.  She was at church when the roar arrived.

“[My sons] were coming down the stairs screaming.  There was a lot of dust.  I ran into the stairway, grabbed me boys, took them down the street to the neighbors…I was pulling them from the rubble as they were on the steps.

Somehow they survived all those falling bricks.

Their father said they went to Children’s Hospital for treatment.

Relatives said they were released after treatment for bumps and bruises.

Their grandma considered that an answer to prayers, which, like the wind, she never saw coming.

“This has been here as long as I’ve been here.  You can understand, it’s just heartbreaking,” Webb said.

It’s heartbreaking that you can now stand on the roof without being on top the house.  Barbara Webb is 76.

This out of nowhere windstorm not only terrorized her family, it stole a bit of their heritage.

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