“Shoal Creek Valley will never be the same,” said Matthew Sanders, who grew up in the area and has many family members living there.
The scene at Shoal Creek Valley was chaotic in the aftermath of the storm.
Cars were overturned. Power lines were tangled along the ground and dangled from power poles snapped in half by the storm. Trees were down in every direction.
The steeple at Greensport Baptist Church was ripped off.
Dead horses, goats, dogs and other animals were scattered throughout the area.
Sanders said landmarks once familiar to him are now only a memory.
But some Shoal Creek Valley residents lost much more than landmarks, cars and homes — some lost their most precious possessions, their loved ones.
Eleven people died in the storm that wreaked havoc on Shoal Creek Valley. Another died Friday at University Hospital in Birmingham.
“I’ve had a part of me ripped out,” said Buford Sanders, whose son, Albert Sanders, and daughter-in-law, Angie Sanders, were killed in the storm.
Family members said the couple’s three children are seriously injured and are now in three different Birmingham hospitals.
Longtime Shoal Creek resident Mike Wolfe stood across Shoal Creek Road from his home. He was standing on a driveway that used to lead to his parents’ home. The home is no longer there.
Wolfe said his father, Charlie Wolfe, was killed in the storm after being “tossed” into the woods behind his home. His mother was also injured and is recovering at a Birmingham hospital.
Don and Sissy Sanders said they were trapped beneath the rubble of their home Wednesday night. The couple finally managed to dig their way out and walked away unscathed.
“It was unbelievably emotional,” said Shoal Creek resident Mark Sanders. “It is heartbreaking.”
Contact Kenny Farmer at email@example.com.