Jefferson Ave. residents continue tornado cleanup amid hopes of public assistance

Local News

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) — Governor Robert Bentley announced on Friday that the state was able to secure public assistance in the wake of the most recent tornadoes and floods. The after effects of the Christmas Day tornado are still shaking the Jefferson Avenue community as they work to pick up the pieces.

“It was awful, it was awful for a lot of people, it really was,” said Edith Ransom.

Ransom’s home was one of the several that were destroyed Christmas day.

“I could have lost my whole entire family, but I didn’t and I thank God for that, I really do,” said Ransom.

Her family was able to pick up the pieces and rebuild. Three weeks removed from the storm, Ransom has a new roof and her interior which was unrecognizable at first, is now repaired.

“I was just fortunate to have insurance, but a lot of people don’t,” said Ransom.

On January 15, Bentley announced that Alabama was able to secure public assistance amounting in $30 million, which will go towards the tornado and flood stricken area. However, Bentley said the state did not have enough damage to get individual assistance.

“We said, ‘let’s get some assistance,’ and we did that through the Small Business Association and people are able to get low interest loans now and individual assistance will be in that matter,” said Bentley.

Meanwhile, a community has come together to help pick up the pieces of their neighborhood.

“We are going to do all we can and we are going to do the best we can,” said Melvin Kelly.

Ransom’s husband is confined to a hospital bed. She said the only room in her house that wasn’t touched was his room. She said she grabbed her grand kids and prayed.

“My grand kids was there and one of them kept saying, ‘grandma we are going to die’ and I said ‘no we are not, we are not going to die, we are not, we are going to pray this thing away from us’ and I just kept praying and praying and she said, ‘grandma you know what? you prayed the devil away from us’ and I said ‘I guess I did,'” said Ransom.

All the counties covered by SBA disaster assistance will have certain options to choose from. For more information on the Governor’s assistance plan, click here.

Copyright 2016 WIAT CBS 42

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