One family survives two tornados in three years - KOAM TV 7

One family survives two tornados in three years


People who survived the tornado will always remember it and for Tom Cook, the twister conjures up another memory he would rather forget.

It was three years ago on May 11th that Tom Cook's wife, Terri, of 19 years, died after a tornado destroyed their home near Racine. 

That loss led him to Joplin, where he and his daughter lived until this past week's tornado. 
He says riding out this tornado seemed to last longer than the one in 2008.

Tom Cook, survived tornado, says, "This one we sat in there it seemed like for two minutes. It may not have been that long but God it was a long time."

A length at which he and his daughter were inside a tornado safe located inside their garage. 

Cook says, "We just followed our reaction and our plan worked. I mean you learn from that if you get through it once you don't want to give it a chance again to get you. Although you just cant believe that this powerful of a storm can do this to you twice in three years."
Cook says if it wasn't for the safe, he and his daughter would have been buried under the rubble they once called home.

Ryanne Cook has been occupying her time and coping with the loss of the family home by volunteering at The Bridge. 

Ryanne Cook, survived tornado, says, "The reason I decided to volunteer here is to help people like the stuff that happened to me, because they lost their homes, they're confused, they don't know what to do and I just wanted to give back."

Tom says hearing of all the deaths, he recalls the fond memories the family had until a twister took the life of his wife.

A funeral program lays in the rubble as the cooks try to pick up the pieces left after the storm.

Tom Cook says, "This brings back May 11th when wife passed. I feel sorry for them. I feel for them."

Cook says he looks at moving again, but jokes that his new neighbors might be afraid of him moving near them. 
He also advises that people have some sort of tornado shelter they can get to quickly.

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