Today Show: Mother Had To Take Shelter From Tornado Without Her Son
During Monday’s Moore, Oklahoma tornado, one of many mothers whose children were at school when the storm struck was forced to take take shelter not knowing their fate. 30-year-old Jana was forced to hunker down in a safe room when the tornado hit, while her children were miles away at a daycare center. “It’s all I thought about,” she said, choking up thinking about all the other ways this story could have ended.
When the storm passes, Jana went outside and saw the destruction, and panic set in. With her car destroyed and cell phone towers toppled, Jana had no way to get to or communicate with the day care center that her children were at to find out if they were okay.
Hours passed, the panic was beginning to be replaced with desperation, and things were looking grim. That is, until one of her co-worker’s husbands pulled up in a pickup truck. Jana jumped into the back of the truck and they headed for the nearest hospital outside of the disaster zone. When Jana arrived at the ER, she found her injured son lying in a bed. She ran up to him, wrapping him in her arms and feeling a wave of relief that he was all right.
Today Show: Daycare Workers Shielded Children With Their Own Bodies
Her son has only a mild head injury, and this is in part thanks to the daycare workers. As the storm was incoming, they stacked cots, padding, and then their own bodies on top of the children to protect them from harm. Jana could only offer the daycare workers a tearful thank you for risking their lives to protect her children.
Today Show: Child Inured In Tornado Experiencing Nightmares
Abbey Larson, who manages the daycare center, did not want the children to know just how scared she was. She simply told the children that a freight train would go by and, as soon as it had passed, they would get them right to their parents.
Jana’s son may recover from the physical injuries, but the emotional ones may take longer to heal. He won’t say much about the tornado, and, one night after the tornado, he woke up the next morning speaking of having nightmares about the disaster.