Cairo families continue to clean and cope with storm damage

By: Noelani Mathews | WCTV Eyewitness News
March 7, 2019

CAIRO, Ga. (WCTV) -- The damage remains widespread four days after devastating tornadoes ripped through parts of South Georgia and the Big Bend.

The strongest were EF-3 tornadoes in Leon and Jefferson counties, where winds are estimated to have topped 140 miles per hour. Grady County was hit with an EF-2, where winds were around 120 miles per hour.

Families in Cairo are still cleaning and coping with the aftermath of Sunday's storm. Fourth Avenue in Cairo is one of the hardest hit areas in town.

"It's just devastating everywhere and all we can do is just keep on trying," said Linda Wilson. "When I cry my tears, it's not for what I'm going though, it's for what I'm seeing.

Despite damage, debris and no insurance, Wilson is counting her blessings.

"My neighbors across the street were trapped in their home. My uncle lost the whole back of his house," she said. "We finally got lights and people still don't have lights. Mr. Clark across the street just lost his whole building."

Wilson and her family are consumed with heartache, surrounded by the hardship of good people.

"The roofs are gone, the walls on the outside are gone," said Chintanni Sitt, Wilson's daughter. "It's really devastating to see your neighbor, your friend, somebody you walk past every day or see every day not have a place to go."

A community seeing sympathy, solidarity and support for their hometown.

"Home is where the heart is," said Wilson. "No matter what it looks like and no matter what it comes down to."

Wilson says she can cook, sleep and go to work, but some of her neighbors can't say the same. She says for Cairo to make a full recovery, it'll take the love and support of volunteers and valuable resources to make it through the hard times.