“God Was With Me”: Tornado Victim Recounts Story of Survival

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LINCOLN COUNTY, Tenn. (WHNT) - “They come on the radio and said at the sound of my voice take cover.”

It was only a matter of minutes.

"I ran to where my garage used to be, got in my truck and started down my driveway to my neighbors storm shelter."

A tornado barreled down on Larry George.

"It picked my truck up, carried it about 100 yards in the air, and drove it into the woods. I jumped out the trunk and clawed my way to a big stump and held on," Larry recalls. "The trees were falling and going up in the air all around me and it just sounded like bombs were going off. I just kept climbing and crawling."

Larry sought shelter under a fallen oak tree, huddled next to a root ball, and holding on for dear life.

Larry says it was over as fast as it started.

After about an hour and a half, his friends and neighbors were able to cut through the fallen trees and branches to find him huddled in his horse's stable. The roof had been blown off, the horses had fled.

When asked what was going through his mind, he said simply "survival."

"I knew if I didn't run, if I didn't do something to try to get out of the path, I’m gonna die."

Much of Larry's property is beyond repair. A small barn right next to his house is now in pieces across the river. Some pieces landed as much as a mile away.

Looking at his land, the more than 30 acres of devastation, snapped trees, and debris, Larry knows God was by his side.

"I’m very fortunate and I’m very thankful," said Larry. "Now it’s just a matter of picking up the pieces and putting it back together. And there’s a lot of pieces."

The family has set up a fund to help with the rebuilding process.  If you would like to help him, please visit any Redstone Federal Credit Union and make a donation to the Larry George Rebuilding Fund.


    • Say What

      Sue, if God was watching over him, that must mean that God was not watching over the ones that were killed. Why would God watch over some and not others?

      • ???

        Of course that’s NOT what it means! It obvious wasn’t his time to go. Maybe God spared him for a reason. No one know the answer to that.

      • Say What

        ???, if it is true that no one knows the answer concerning why some died, than how can anyone be sure that God was watching over anyone? When I asked about those that died, people say we can not know what God intends. Yet, you seem to know what God’s intentions were when you talk about those that survived.

      • Amanda

        God does not “send” tornadoes. They are natural disasters! It rains on the just and the unjust. There is no respect a person. God just helps us through those horrible times. It’s beyond me why some are saved and some are not. It doesn’t mean he loves some more than others. It just means it’s life, and he helps us through it.

      • Say What

        Amanda, that makes no sense. Who made what you call nature? Isn’t God ALL powerful? That means God is the most powerful. Are you saying that nature is more powerful than God? If God helps us through life, why does he help some (those that survived) more than others (the ones that did not survive)? I expect that you will say it is not for us to question. By saying that God provided protection for some is a type of questioning of his actions. People seem to be sure that God protects some, but have no answer for when people ask why he chooses to protect some (because, as you said, he does provide protection for some), while not protecting others.

    • Skillpot

      Let me say that God controls all things, Positive, and Negative! I only wish I understood what it is all about. The comments below are valid, but all, just like mine, are without understanding!

      But, I trust the Word of God that I have made the right choice for my future, after this life – come Lord Jesus and snatch the Church out of this mess! I often wonder who the last one is that will be used to seal the Church! How about you? Remember, the P and N includes Heaven, and Hell!

  • Tonya

    God truly had something to do with this. I am so thankful to know this family and praise God that Larry will get the opportunity to walk his only daughter down the aisle in 2 months

  • Logan

    This post is NOT meant to be a Biblical debate! I am Larry’s daughter, and I am so thankful that God spared him to walk me down the aisle in two months!! That being said, I am horrified at the people who were killed (who we knew), as well as all the damage that happened. Just because I (and many others) are thankful that God spared my dad, doesn’t mean that I (and many others) are not heartbroken over the loss of people and places.

    If you have nothing nice to say, then just don’t say anything at all.

    For the ones with positive messages, THANK YOU from the bottom of my heart. I truly appreciate it. Keep praying for the Lincoln County community!

  • We are also families

    Logan, I am very happy that your Dad is alive to enjoy you in his life. I have known people close to me that have been killed in these types of natural disasters. The families of those killed can feel terrible when they hear people say that those that lived were protected by God. What we hear is that God did not protect our loved ones. We also have feelings when people talk about God “being with the survivors!” The title of this story makes it a biblical issue! Please keep in mind that even when you say “nice things” it can be hurtful.

  • Charlotte

    Amen to that, I hope your Dad continues to get better and praise God’s name. I’m praying for all, even the one’s who question everthing.

  • Logan

    Quite frankly, I will praise God for sparing my dad every day I’m alive, and if people would like to get upset about that, that is on them. I would never wish harm or death upon anyone, especially in this situation, but it sounds like the people you speak of need to be dealing with Jesus instead of worrying about the situation I am in. Yes, I feel terrible for those people that lost their families, I truly do, but does that mean I should suppress my joy and praise to God because of it? If you think that answer is ‘yes,’ then we’re going to have to agree to disagree.

    & as for the title of this article, my dad spoke those words, and I am so thankful that God was with him! The beautiful part of it all is that God IS with the people that lost their lives, and their families too, just in a different aspect.

    I’m not trying to argue with anyone, I promise. I just don’t like being told that I shouldn’t be thrilled that my dad is still here and praise God for that publicly.

    Have a great night, y’all!

    • Say What

      KB, actually, I ask questions because I have a brain and do not have to rely on magical thinking. Why don’t you try something different and address my points logically? I will be waiting — probably a long time!

  • Nuclear Mike

    The old Baptists’ adage…”God is either rewarding you or punishing you in life”.

    You choose which one meets your needs at the time.

  • KB

    @ Say What…. Why would you post such a stupid comment??? GOD obviously has a reason for not giving YOU brains!

    • Say What

      KB, actually, I ask questions because I have a brain and do not have to rely on magical thinking. Why don’t you try something different and address my points logically? I will be waiting — probably a long time!

      • Say What

        It takes one to know one — nananah! I’m rubber and you are glue, what you say bounces off me and sticks to you!!! Nananah!

      • KB

        Just be happy that someone has the chance to share his experience and is alive. That is what this story is about. Think before you post please. Enough with the childish comebacks as well.

      • Say What

        KB, speaking of childish, there are families planning funerals and burying their loved ones as you celebrate those that you feel were watched over by God.

  • Ford

    I rejoice greatly for the lives of those who were spared while I also mourn and pray for the families of those who lost life; within that, it’s important to understand the same God who allows the sun to shine also causes the rain to fall.

    The Bible teaches the same, God is real and Jesus does save; regardless of what man may say.

    Remember the Bible is the Word of God, you have to believe it to be saved, read it to grow in it, practice it to be holy, and apply it to gain an understanding…

  • Cory

    Logan so thankful Larry is ok. Im Robert Perrys grandson please tell him im praying for him and his family.

  • jessice

    I know larry personally he a great man I am thankful he is alive and okay God was looking over all of Lincoln county and we should all be thankful there was no more then 2 deaths in the county Logan you are a lucky girl to have a dad like him

  • KB

    Say What,,, you are pushing your misunderstanding of GOD onto everyone here. We are not meant to understand GOD’s will but to have faith in it even though we lose loved ones in the process. DO not put words into my mouth. That being said, I will no longer stoop to your level any longer with a response to your ignorance. Good day and GOD bless you my friend.

    • Say What

      KB, if we are not meant to understand Gods will than how do you know that he was “with” anyone or that he “protects” people? It is you that seems to know God’s will. You (and others) just get mad when I call you on your assumptions concerning how God works. You like your assumptions, but do not even want to address my assumptions.

  • Misty

    The trolls need to stop trolling and find something more productive to do. It doesn’t matter how one chooses to believe this all went or if one wants to give credit to a God or not. Bottom line: it is very sad that two lives were lost; it is also joyous that so many lives were spared when it could have been much worse. Mother Nature is a beast when angry. If believing in a God helps people cope and get through this, so be it. If you have nothing better to do than troll, Lincoln County could use a hand in cleaning up pieces of people’s lives.

  • lyndass (@motorpsyo333)

    …Sorry..can anybody else see that this man story don’t hold water?..Lets see..he gets in his truck and it was picked up and threw a 100 yrds and he gets out craws and claws to a tree stump while trees and debris is fling through the air and trees are snapped into…the man does not have a scratch on his face or arms…watch the video again he is not telling about something he lived through..he is telling something that is made up in his mind..and the account set-up at RFCU is for his daughters wedding/

  • Logan

    Lyndass, you are completely incorrect. First off, if you only knew how this has effected my family. I am in disgust at how you have falsely accused my father of making this up. And as for him not having any marks, he does. They are on the backs of his arms and palms of his hands, and he also has a slight sprain in his ankle, as well as him being extremely sore. It is very much true what happened. I don’t have to prove anything to you. I know the real story. Secondly, the fund at RFCU is most certainly NOT for my wedding. My dad and I didn’t even set it up. His niece did. I would NEVER take someone else’s kindness to my father and use it for my own personal gain. Clearly, you do not know my family, because we would give the shirts off our back for anyone else. Making up stories for sympathy is not in our families’ character. My dad and our family are very well-respected in the community, and it is pathetic that someone would doubt the truth. I believe with all of my heart that God was with my father. In all normal circumstances, he shouldn’t be here, but I am so thankful that he is. If you feel that we are trying to make up a story to fund my wedding, then you need to have a talk with Jesus instead of blaspheming my dad’s good name.

    Quit trying to invent conspiriacy theories instead of celebrate that my dad is still with us. Troll somewhere else.

    To the ones that have sent their well-wishes and prayers via this post, thank you so much!!! :)

  • Brian Rodgers

    I had the great privilege of meeting Larry in the first couple days after this event. He was still visibly shaken from the events that had transpired but he is obviously a man of much strength. His place bore remnants of the signs of property well cared for. The visual image if the devastation of the garage and barns still haunt me because I know what it takes to labor and build and to care for a place like Larry has. I am continuing to pray for each and everyone effected by these storms. The recovery will not be fully realized in this lifetime. God bless you, Larry.

    • Logan

      Thank you so much for the kind words about my daddy, Brian! He’s the strongest person I know and I’m so thankful he’s still with us! God bless! :)

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