August 8, 2003 at 3:06 PM EST - Updated June 23 at 7:57 AM
We were rushing to pick our 3 girls up from daycare in Lake Park . We saw a funnel cloud that looked like it was in North Palm Beach . It began to take shape but then dissappeared. We thought it was just a big storm coming. So we rushed home.
Myself, my husband and our four children arrived to our apartment, still excited about what we thought we had seen. I told my neighbors' kids to get inside it's about to rain. We made it upstairs and was just kinda winding down, everyone was taking their shoes off. Then the lights kept going on and off. So we sat quiet in the living room for about 3 minutes, the lights went completely out and it sounded like the rain had just started. My husband went to look for candles, but stopped, he said " Is something hitting the window?"
When I looked out the kitchen window, I saw clothing flying around. I just stared, puzzled. What did I just see? Then it sounded like a train was coming. I shouted to my husband "We need to move, get into the bathroom!" We frantically grabbed our kids and headed for the bathroom. As soon as we bent the corner into the bathroom, the windows blew out. I shouted to my husband "The puppy! Get the puppy!"
We made it into the bathroom and breathed a little sigh of relief, but it wasn't over. My husband did a verbal check that we were all there, then the roof began to lift off. We were in pitch black and then we could see the sky. Again and again and again, we went from darkness to light. I just told myself, at least we'll all go together. We had did everything right, get into the room with no windows. But we were about to be sucked through the roof. Then everything got quiet.
Unbelievable! We were all still here, together! My husband went out to assess the damage, everything was covered in ceiling, glass, and insulation. Water was leaking from what looked like the ceiling and the floor. All along the seams of the roof, you can see where it had separated, because the insulation was hanging out. The floors were creaking and beams had been thrown all over.
My next door neighbor came over and we went there to catch our breath. When we went outside our car looked freakish. The hood of the car looked like a crumpled bag of chips. The car had been picked up and slammed down, the tires were blown out and the windows. My husband went in and out of the apartment to try to salvage what he could, but was only able to grab things from the front. We were afraid to go any further into the house, because it seemed like it would collapse at any moment. But God is a good God! We were all alive and without a scratch! True, all our material belongings are gone, we have our lives; our family is intact. Nothing is more important than that!