‘It looked like the house was going to explode:’ Eastern Kentucky family cleans up after heavy storms cause severe damage

POWELL COUNTY, Ky. (WKYT) – A Powell County family cleans up with help from the community after storms last Wednesday night severely damaged the home they were staying in.

Thomas Markwell and his wife Diane prepare for bed Wednesday night when heavy storms battered Powell County.

“It happened so fast,” Thomas said. “It probably wasn’t three minutes and it was over.”

Strong winds delivered a sudden but devastating blow.

“The first thing they heard was that the circuit breaker went off,” said Chris Clem, their son.

Strong winds delivered a sudden but devastating blow, ripping wires from the wall and ripping the roof off their house.

“It looked like the house was going to explode,” Diane said.

Thomas and Diane say the roof fell on their car and the house is probably a total loss. Clem says they planned to move to Winchester. But it will be months before they can move in there, so a friend lent them a motorhome to live there for now.

“It’s a bit difficult living in an RV,” Clem said. “They’re displaced at the moment and that’s traumatic in itself, it’s extremely stressful.”

Despite the difficult road ahead, the community has stepped up to offer physical support with cleanup and financial assistance through a GoFundMe page.

“Since I was 12 I had a job, I never asked for help,” Thomas said. “But it showed me the good in people.”

So this Easter Sunday, they’re grateful for what they still have and hope it’s a blessing in disguise.

“I give glory to Jesus Christ, I believe his hand was upon us that night,” Thomas said.

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