Part of middle school roof ripped off, school flooded
By Honora Gathings
Only minor injuries have been reported in Kimberly. But daylight has revealed more damage. The destruction of Kimberly Church of God and the fire station was apparent. But now, more than half of North Jefferson Middle School is covered in water. The principal doesn't know when students will be able to return."I slept right there in the car. I wanted to be here when the sun came up. I really couldn't fathom the damage. I could see parts of the town I couldn't see anymore, so I knew when the sun came up, I'd be amazed," said North Jefferson Middle School principal Craig Kanaday.The tornado passed 100 yards from the school. It overturned the school's brick sign, triggered the school's alarm and ripped off part of the roof in the gym. A few inches of water now covers much of the school's floor."We're making a plan A and a plan B. Obviously, if we can get things back up and running. This is where we want to be. We're possibly going to utilize elementary schools in the area," said Kanaday.Teachers, staff, parents and even former students help Kanaday remove food from the freezer."People always say if you need me, call me. You don't have to call these folks," he said.They just showed up."We just walked up and been working since seven," said Adam McCurry, a former student."This is the community where I grew up. You have to help out when the time comes," said Clay Walker, another student."We aren't average. We try to make this the best community we can be," said Conner Bowman, another former student.The hole in the gym ceiling is the most visible damage. But the rubber sealing the roof is missing from most of it. That's a big concern because of the additional rain expected later Tuesday. Crews are trying to patch the roof ahead of it.
ABC 33/40 in Birmingham, Alabama offers news, sports, and weather reporting for the surrounding communities including Tuscaloosa, Anniston, Cullman, Gadsden, Talladega, Sylacauga, Carbon Hill, Jasper, Hoover, Bessemer, Vestavia Hills, Alabaster, Trussville and Homewood.