Tornado victims reflect on losses, but focus on blessings on Thanksgiving holiday

Thanksgiving is a day to reflect on the things you are fortunate enough to have. But for some, it can be a painful reminder of what they are missing.

That is the case for people affected by the North Texas tornado outbreak in October. Many neighborhoods are still struggling to get back on their feet.

More than a month later, you see a mix of devastation and signs of some trying to begin again. People still dealing with the heartbreak still celebrated the holiday.

On Thanksgiving Day, a blower cleared leaves from a backyard in the Bradford Estates. But the damage done by the tornado that blew through a little more than a month ago can't be so easily cleared.

Robert Carrasco Drake's home, like most of the 1,722 homes in the Northwest Dallas neighborhood, saw its value get ripped apart by the twister.

“Two days after the tornado, we were gonna put the house on the market,” he said.

Martha Allen has lived in her home 45. She, her grandson and her dog hunkered in a bathroom as the tornado dirty danced through her community.

“That tree in the front yard, my children had planted it 25 years ago when my husband had passed away in memory of their dad,” she said. “Well, it split and fell over on my car. My car is in the hospital still.”

But Allen and her family were unharmed.

Both Allen and Drake aren’t letting the spirit of the holiday be blown away.

“For two of us, there’s a 12-pound turkey a 10-pound ham and all the fixings,” Drake said.

“I’m so thankful for everything,” Allen said. “I’m thankful to be alive.”