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Storm picks up, moves LaGrange house with couple inside

7:03 PM, Apr 28, 2011   |    comments
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Foreground shows the foundation of the Hornsbys' home. The house is in the background, more than 100 feet away.

LAGRANGE, Ga. -- There was an abundance of storm damage off Murphy Rd. in rural Troup County.  But many residents seemed to be talking most about one destroyed home in particular -- because of what happened to it, and because of who was inside.

Mike Hornsby and his wife Susan were inside.

Mike Hornsby is the pastor of New Hope Baptist Church. He and and his wife sought refuge in a bathroom as the storm surged onto their property.

"And we could just tell it was getting real bad with the wind," Susan Hornsby said.  "We felt the house being lifted up."

"We could feel it up in the air, feel it moving," said Mike Hornsby.  "And actually, I could tell that the house was coming apart."

When the storm passed, the Hornsbys' house had been lifted from its foundation, twisted 90 degrees and moved a hundred feet to the east.

In the darkness they encountered a neighbor.

"We were so disoriented," said Susan Hornsby.  "And I said, 'where are we?'  And she said 'ma'am, your house used to be up here.'

"'But your house is totally turned around facing a different direction.'"

After daybreak, the Hornsbys' lawn began to fill with neighbors and parishoners who helped sort debris and collect belongings.

Mrs. Hornsby says the moment the home lifted was "awesome."

"I felt God's hand on us," she said.

"I'm just thankful that God spared our lives for a reason," said Mike Hornsby.

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