As severe thunderstorms rolled through Wayne County on Monday – one community in Wayne County was particularly hard hit.
Three brothers were narrowly escaped injury when a tree fell through their family’s mobile home on State Route 104 as the storm rolled through the Town of Ontario.
“It dawned on me … I’m going to die or miraculously be alive,” said Thomas Emery afterward, just steps away from the destroyed home. “I went to peak my head around the hallway, when I did that, about that time I saw the bedroom wall shift some, I heard some popping and cracking.”
"It dawned on me…I'm going to die or miraculously be alive"
Brothers describe the terrifying moment a tree tore into their home in Ontario. pic.twitter.com/ui9iVtpxUc
— Stephanie Robusto (@WHEC_SRobusto) August 7, 2018
His younger brother, Dalton, was in the living room when he saw the ceiling start to move – and cave in. Thomas yelled for his brother to move. Thomas’ other two brothers were able to get out because of his quick-thinking. However, he had to drop to the ground as the roof began to cave in to avoid serious injury.
“I got hit by a part of the roof and the wall itself. A piece of quarter inch sheetrock is what saved me from getting hit by the tree. My head was three inches away from getting hit by the tree…that sheetrock saved me,” he said after.
Dalton and Andrew feared the worst for their brother, Thomas. “I was thinking ‘it’s too late, Thomas is dead,'” explained Dalton, the youngest of the three children. However, Thomas said the force of the tree hitting the home pushed him out of harms way.
“I felt my body move forward, like the flooring slid out from where it was sitting. I felt myself being rained on, in a matter of 15 seconds. I could hear my brothers screaming, I was outside. My immediate action was full-blown ‘save the kids’ mode. I booked it around the house to the front door. I get to the front door and I see them screaming and that the tree had come through the roof,” Thomas continued, adding that they ran to a neighbor’s house to call 911.
“I’m just happy my brothers and me are alive. I’m a little shaky. I can still see it in my head…just picture it,” added Dalton.
Thomas agreed, pointing out that he was still seeing ‘flashes’ of everything happening. “I’m O-K otherwise … my head doesn’t hurt … I just can’t believe I’m alive,” he concluded.
The Red Cross assisted at the scene. A second family that lived in a neighboring mobile home had to be relocated as well due to damage done by the tree.
BREAKING: three boys were able to escape after a tree fell into their home in Ontario pic.twitter.com/yp14OAm7dm
— Stephanie Robusto (@WHEC_SRobusto) August 6, 2018