BERTHOUD, Colo. -- Families are still picking up the pieces after a powerful tornado hit near Berthoud last week.
“I was maybe five steps down the stairway when the house literally exploded around us,” said Dick Scott. The 75-year-old and his grandson Brandon Scott ran into a basement as the tornado passed above them Thursday.
The National Weather Service said Monday the tornado has been rated an EF3 with maximum winds estimated at 135 to 140 mph.
“Nobody was hurt. We’re very fortunate,” said Dick Scott.
But Brandon Scott’s two-story home is now just one story.
“It slammed that big old trailer, like a 50-foot trailer, up against the side of the house and just destroyed it. That’s probably why this wall is laying here,” said Brandon Scott.
The house and the garage nearby were a complete loss. Their insurance company will pay the costs to rebuild and repair, but it can’t replace everything.
“Many of our cherished mementos are just gone,” said Dick Scott. “I just know I have a lot to do, a lot of stuff to replace,” said Brandon Scott.
Neighbors like Ann Jamieson and her daughter Miriam did what they could to help and donated toys for Brandon’s two children.
“I feel good and nice and generous and all those good things,” said 9-year-old Miriam.
She even made a card for the family to show even in destruction, there’s hope.
“I feel like all the people around here are kind of like an extended family in a way,” said Jamieson.
The Scott family has set up a GoFund Me account for anyone who wants to help.
Also, Larimer County is opening a Disaster Assistance Center at 6-8 p.m. Tuesday at the Berthoud Community Center, 248 Welch Avenue, to assist people affected by the tornado.