BONNE TERRE, Mo. – Residents in Bonne Terre have spent the day assessing the widespread damage and cleaning up what they can after the destructive winds Wednesday night.
The cleanup effort was in full swing Thursday afternoon as the community came together to help.
“Trying to get all the ones off the houses first, then we’re going to work on just random, what people need done,” said Jaob Gillis, KO Tree Service.
For Jerrod Ragsdale, a massive tree destroyed his garage and was mere inches away from collapsing onto his house.
“The tree, when I noticed it, it was a foot from our kitchen window. And above our kitchen is both our kids’ rooms, and there was a branch resting on that corner where it could have came down on both of their rooms,” he said.
Although there were no vehicles inside the structure, Ragsdale lost some treasured items that can’t be replaced.
“Memories, keepsakes, my working equipment, my hunting equipment. All kinds of Navy memorabilia and stuff from my time in the Navy,” Ragsdale said.
It was also a close call for Kate Boyer, who lost multiple trees on her property.
“These trees were like blowing down so hard and then the first one fell, so we scooped up our kids and went down to the basement, and stayed down there for the rest of the storm,” she said.
And now the waiting game comes for power. Luckily, Boyer has a generator on loan from family who also lost power in the storms.
“My father-in-law, they live in Farmington, they got their electric on fairly quickly, so he called this morning and said, ‘Do you want me to bring this over so we can at least plug in our fridge, our fans, because it’s so humid out.’ We have dogs inside, so he brought that over and got that all going for us,” she said.
Luckily, there were no injuries reported but the power restoration effort and clean-up process are ongoing.