Family members mourn loss of tornado victims - WLOX.com - The News for South Mississippi

Family members mourn loss of tornado victims

Photo credit: WDAM Photo credit: WDAM
HATTIESBURG, MS (WDAM) -

Just off Edwards Street in Hattiesburg in a small mobile home park, two Hub City residents lost their lives in the Saturday tornado.

On Monday, family members gathered among the twisted metal, broken wood and debris to pick up the pieces.

Ernest Perkins, 58, and David Wayne McCoy, 47, were killed just a few yards apart in separate mobile homes off Edwards Street.

“This trailer here…this was my mom and dad’s trailer,” said Dennis Miller, Perkins’ son.

Miller was out of town when the storm swept through the Hub City, but after a call to his brother, he said he rushed home.

“It hurt that I couldn’t get here for my dad and be there for my dad in his last days, it hurt, it hurt me pretty bad,” Miller said. 

Miller said his mother was also inside during the tornado, and she was lucky to survive.

“We are here trying to just salvage what we can,” Miller said. “We don’t ever want her to think that its all ruined… he’s gone…but never forgotten, we here trying to see what we can get for her.”

Perkins' next-door neighbor, William Moore, also knew David McCoy.

“He was my friend, he was family. We been knowing him since he was a little boy,” Moore said. 

Moore said he feels lucky to even be alive to tell the story.

“It coulda been me, I feel like God spared me one more time, you know, it coulda been me,” Moore said. “I have known them both, you know, we all grew up around here, they was just like family.”

McCoy’s home was crushed by a tree during the EF-3 tornado.

“I can’t even explain you know, I just don’t have any words, you know, we praying for the family,” Moore said. 

Additional fatalities:

Cleveland Madison, 20, and Simona Cox, 72, were also killed in Forrest County during the tornado.

More than 1,100 homes were damaged or destroyed in eight counties and more than 60 injuries were reported according to the Mississippi Emergency Management Agency.

Copyright 2017 WDAM. All rights reserved. 

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