Tornado victims struggle to deal with their loss

Wednesday, March 7, 2012 - 10:00am

As families continue to pour through all of the splintered wood and twisted metal, signs of recovery are slowly showing up amidst the rubble in Henryville, Indiana.

Yesterday morning the new Washington State bank reopened.

There was no power. All the transactions had to be written out by hand.

Working by hand is something most are getting used to in Henryville.

Before the storm Cari Mattingly's beauty salon and house sat side-by-side.

Now what's left of both is scattered for miles.

She doesn't know how to get over everything that's happened.

"There are no words to put together to describe that very moment," she says.

For others the word is simple and obvious.

It's hero.

As the tornado was tearing away her home and everything around them, Stephanie Decker refused to let it take her children.

She saved her little boy and girl, but flying debris left her crippled.

"I had two steal beams on my legs," she explains.

Fighting through the pain, she grabbed a cell phone and made a video goodbye for her husband and children, in case she didn't make it.

Fortunately, she did get help.

Doctors were able to save her life, but not her legs.

Most agree there's not much Stephanie can't do.

"If I have to live without legs, I'll get prosthetics and that is okay, I can do that," she says.

Like so many in Henryville, she's a survivor.

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