Storm Leaves Trail Of Damage Down Dedeaux Road - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

11/24/04

Storm Leaves Trail Of Damage Down Dedeaux Road

Strong thunderstorms pounded parts of Mississippi early Wednesday, leaving one person dead, several injured and dozens of homes and businesses heavily damaged.

Governor Haley Barbour declared a state of emergency.

The fatality happened in Winston County after straight line winds destroyed a house near Louisville.

Closer to home, the severe weather took aim at several businesses and a church along Dedeaux Road.

The timing of the storm was fortunate. Despite the damage to numerous businesses, people are thankful there were no injuries. The storm hit shortly before six in the morning, before heavy traffic time and before most business owners opened their doors.

"When I hook that chain up to that door, we'll pull it out and try to get that other truck out of there," said  Toby Dombrowsk, as he directed repair crews at his storm damaged business.

His  "3-D Glass" will probably get plenty of storm related business. Trouble is, about a quarter of his building was knocked out by the winds. He'll try to reopen by Friday or Monday.

"We've been through practically every hurricane in awhile and hadn't had any damage. I guess it was our turn though," Dombrowski said.

The storm seemed to target businesses along Dedeaux Road. It tossed large pieces of metal facade through power lines. Debris littered the street, as utility crews began the business of restoring power, phones and cable.

"I've been in it over 50 years. And this is the first time anything like this," said business owner, Mart Allen.

The early morning storm left a mess at his Budget Cleaners. Customer clothing stayed dry and protected, but the building took quite a hit.

"It took off the canopy, I mean the whole drive through. Did all of these columns. Tore them down. Took the roof off. About a quarter of the roof. Broke a lot of glass. A lot of water inside," said Allen.

"I was in shock. Big shock. I thought I lost everything," said Linda Dills, who owns a video store at Dedeaux Road and Hendry Drive.

She was shocked when she drove up on the mess outside the business this morning. But thankfully, the inside of the video store sustained very little damage.

She'd already planned on staying open Thanksgiving Day and sees no reason to change those plans.

"Actually we didn't lose that much inside. It's all structural. So, we're just getting things back together," said Dills.

Business owners we talked with are focused on repairs and reopening. They echo a shared sentiment this Thanksgiving.

"Everybody can rebuild. And nobody got hurt. That's the main thing," said Dills.

By Steve Phillips

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