Radcliffe Mother Hides Children in Basement when Tornado Comes Through Town

RADCLIFFE, Iowa -- "This tree was big and beautiful and now it looks pretty bare, but it fell this way and there was a line there that it fell on top of," said Dewey Street homeowner Andrea Thompson. Thompson was homeschooling her five children when she noticed the weather was getting loud and windy during the noon hour, so she took her kids down into the basement for safety.

"There was a lot of crying, a lot of screaming. I mean, they were pretty nervous. It was pretty loud and I don`t think they would have been quite as scared if i wasn`t quite as scared, if I would have kept my composure maybe a little better for them, but I didn`t. I was freaking out; just a hundred percent, full on freak-out mode," said Thompson.

Thompson kept on counting her kids. "I was pretty darn scared... I was home by myself, with all the kids and you know, counting heads, probably 30 times, even though I knew they were all there, but just panicking, thinking, 'I gotta make sure they`re all down here,' because I think the front door might have been still been cracked open," said Thompson.

When things calmed down, she came outside and saw the damage the tornado had done. "Came up and seen that the pickup truck was flipped over. It was the first thing I saw, and then I started seeing the trees were down and the fence is down and like there`s a power line that`s down, and now all the neighbors are kind of looking around and the city guy`s here, so it was interesting. It was loud," said Thompson.

Seeing her husband's 1969 Ford pickup truck on its side was quite the surprise. "That is my husband`s baby. He`s been working on it, for a while now. It doesn`t run yet, but he just finally got a tailgate for it," said Thompson. "It`s gonna be his rod. I`m pretty interested to see how bad that side is once we get it flipped over, and have the insurance look at it...We want it running again so, a date night vehicle kind of, (is) what the plan is, was."