POLK COUNTY, Mo. — After severe weather swept across the Ozarks, two families in Polk County lost their homes.
Members of the Chance family survived the storms by taking cover in a neighbor’s storm shelter.
Jesse Chance is married with three kids. When he got the tornado warning alert his wife was at work and two of his kids were in school, so Jesse and his 5-year-old son took cover.
Jesse said after five minutes of being in the shelter, he could hear the wind.
“Heard kind of a big gust of wind and the tree branches rustling real bad, and then it all calmed down,” Jesse said. “Maybe a minute after that, I kind of opened the door, to see, you know, to see what I could see out the storm shelter.”
Unfortunately, the Chance family home was destroyed.
“I just couldn’t grasp what I was looking at,” Jesse said. “And then it set in that it was our homes and they were just gone.”
The day after the storm took his home, Jesse says his family’s safety is all that matters to him.
“I am so thankful that my family’s okay and our pets are okay,” Jesse said. “The rest of it is stuff that can be replaced, but my family can’t.”
Without a home, what’s next for Jesse’s family?
“We’ve got to rebuild,” Jesse said. “I have my family, I have friends and support system. And, we rebuild. We move forward because it’s what we have to do.”
Jesse’s advice for those watching at home: When your area receives a tornado warning, take cover immediately. He says it could save your life.