West Palm Beach family takes refuge from Irma in Jackson MO

JACKSON, MO (KFVS) - Families all across Florida evacuated the Sunshine State ahead of Hurricane Irma's landfall.

People were told to head north which is exactly what the Wells family did. They left their home in West Palm Beach, Florida, on Sept. 6 and headed to Jackson, Missouri to wait it out.

They started their journey home on Sept. 12.

"You can't live in Florida in hurricanes and not be prepared," said Stephen Wells. "We brought everything, pretty much everything, of value to us. I mean that we couldn't replace."

They parked their boat, two trucks, and a car at his mother's house and settled in. The family also had to park a dump trailer about 20 minutes down the road with a Bobcat and some other work equipment that Stephen uses for work.

Wells left Missouri in the 90s, but said he still thinks fondly of the Show Me State. That's why he decided to hunker down in Jackson.

"Missouri's a community, you know, everywhere you go it's a community," he said. "Everyone knows everybody, they look out for each other."

The family loaded up their dogs, three kids, and gas containers to start the trip home Wednesday afternoon. The trip to Missouri took two-and-a-half days.

"That's what we had coming up, I'm hoping we don't have it going back."

Wells said when they make it home, they'll assess the damage to their property, make a plan, and get back to work.

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