Tornado victims see success after uninsured disaster - My29 WFTC Minneapolis-St. Paul

Tornado victims see success after uninsured disaster

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When the tornado hit north Minneapolis last year, many victims felt they had nowhere to turn -- but one couple held onto hope. Now, they're finally seeing results after riding out the storm for over a year.

The Sumralls say it wasn't easy, but they would rather talk about their success than their struggles.

Even as their home on the corner of North 14th and Vincent avenues fell apart, the Sumralls were pillars of strength.

"When I came up, it looked like a bomb went off," said Trena Sumrall. "People were crying -- car alarms going off, just in dismay."

The tornado last May blew out windows, broke apart their siding and shifted their foundation -- but it didn't shake their faith.

"God gives us what we need," said Sumrall. "He knows what we need."

The couple didn't have homeowners insurance, and didn't qualify for government loans. Trena Sumrall applied for every kind of disaster assistance imaginable.

"The worst they can do is tell me no," she said.

Then, last fall, neighbors and volunteers with Habitat for Humanity stepped in. Now, the remodel is almost complete and the Sumralls see new life -- and their roots are stronger than ever, and they plan to stay firmly planted in a community they hold dear.

"It's a fresh start," said Terry Sumrall. "We're glad -- we're glad we have so much support."

Unfortunately, dozens of homeowners in north Minneapolis didn't have insurance when the tornado struck. A Minneapolis city spokesman said nearly $900,000 in free assistance has been doled out via several non-profits, but it still won't be enough to fix every home.

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