GULFPORT, Ms - It's been an unforgettable night for our Action News crew in Gulfport. Our team was standing outside when a possible tornado ripped through. It was so intense, they were forced to sprint for cover. They weren't the only ones.
"I thought I was about to be sucked up in a tornado," said Sydney Hammons.
She was one of only a few on this street as something powerful surged past. What she experienced is almost beyond words.
"I have no idea but I know that I ran for my life," she said.
Reporter Kristen Sell and Photographer Jerry Palovick were standing in the road when the most powerful storm surge yet pulled though. Kristen says as she looked over, she literally watched a new home being built with new hurricane standards topple over in the wind.
"It looks totally destroyed and I feel sorry for the people that were building it," said Hammons looking at the aftermath.
The builder,Beau Pennington, gave our crew a tour of the home just 24 hours before. He was excited to construct a home with reinforced walls, hurricane straps and clips -- something he said would be strong enough to stand when a hurricane bears down.
"We were almost there we were three days away from being completed with the frame," he said looking over at the mess left behind. "If the windows would have been in if we would have gotten the last few clips on the house I believe the house would have stayed with the storm."
As he spoke, you could see Beau's dreams crumble right along side his house. Hard work, dedication, perseverance, all left in a pile of twisted wood.
"It was just too much of an infant to make it through it so. It's just a...shame so. We'll... Yeah we're gonna rebuild this thing."
It sits in the very spot another home came crashing down from the wrath of Hurricane Katrina. Whether it's a bad spot or bad luck, Beau isn't going down with that house.
He says when they're able to finish it, it will stand strong against the next hurricane. It just wasn't far enough along.