Dawson Springs residents find hope in each other after tornado

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Published: Dec. 13, 2021 at 11:02 PM CST
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DAWSON SPRINGS, Ky. (WFIE) - On Monday, many Dawson Springs residents were forced to shift their focus from shock to action, as recovery efforts after a massive tornado are now underway.

Sam Offutt and his fiancée Annette Moore were in their home as the storm hit.

“It’s nothing left of Dawson Springs,” said Offutt. “I don’t know what they’re going to do. If people are going to move, or if they’re going to rebuild or move out... All I can say is the people who’s helping us: Thank you.”

He was home with his fiancée as the tornado struck his neighborhood.

“I’ve always been the type where, if it’s my time to go, it’s my time to go, but this time, she said, ‘Let’s go to the bathroom,’” Offutt explained. “I just didn’t say a word I just got up and walked into the bathroom... I guess God was telling me, ‘Get up and walk in there.’”

The two of them covered their heads with pillows, while just a block away, many of his neighbors lost everything.

“We got no serious damage compared to some of these people,” he said. “We thank everybody that’s been out here, because this is awful.”

On Monday night, like many residents, they stopped by the Food Giant as more of the people of Dawson Springs took it upon themselves to cook food.

All across the county, Judge Executive Jack Whitfield said folks who have lost everything are donating their time, labor, food and anything imaginable to keep their community alive.

“I love this community,” Whitfield said. “This community takes care of itself.”

Offutt said as he and his neighbors have searched the wreckage, they’ve found ways to look out for others that they had never considered.

“My neighbors had went to check on their family member, and when they went back to the car, the tornado had sucked it up and it landed on top of them, and they looked down and a little puppy was under the car,” Offutt said.

Moore said she sees the puppy as a sign of hope that as the days and weeks go by after the storm, Dawson Springs can heal.

“This community’s come back together, and that really makes me feel good,” said Offutt. “It was just kind of scattered out, but it’s come back together. When we’ve seen these people showing up, first responders and all, that was such a good feeling that we were covered, that we’re all Americans and that we’re still standing.”

Offutt said they named the puppy, and they plan to take care of it until its owner is out of the hospital.

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