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Jan. 23, 2012 tornado by the numbers: Some rebuilding, some not

By Gary Lloyd

One year after the EF-3 tornado that swept through eastern Jefferson County, some area residents have rebuilt their homes, and some have not.

According to the city of Clay’s Emergency Management Agency report, 98 structures were destroyed in the tornado. There were 241 with major damage, 194 with minor damage and 138 affected. There was also substantial damage at the Department of Youth Services Girls School on Old Springville Road.

The Georgebrook and Paradise Valley subdivisions on Old Springville Road took the brunt of the damage.

Some lots in Georgebrook in Clay are for sale.
photo by Gary Lloyd

Tiffanie Reed’s home in Georgebrook was the eighth home on her side of the street on Marchester Circle. It is now the first, because the seven that were next to her have not rebuilt. Those lots are just slabs of concrete, with some debris — parts of toys, wood, a blue poker chip — still evident.

“Our neighborhood was gorgeous before this,” Reed said.

Most of Trussville’s damage occurred in the Pilgrim’s Rest neighborhood, where 82 homes were affected. There were 17 completely destroyed, nine severely damaged, 49 moderately damaged and seven with minor damage, according to Trussville Fire & Rescue statistics.

Four of the 17 homes destroyed have been rebuilt, according to the statistics. It’s not known how many will completely rebuild. One family who has already rebuilt their home, though, is the Blank family, which lives on Jonathans Way. They were one of the first to rebuild, said Sherri Blank. Why?

“We think we live in the best place in Trussville,” she said. “We really knew this is where we wanted to be.”

Contact Gary Lloyd at news@trussvilletribune.com and follow him on Twitter @GaryALloyd.

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