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Putting The Puzzle Pieces Back Together One Year After The Dayton Tornadoes

As WYSO remembers the 2019 Memorial Day tornado disaster and its impacts, we return to one of last year's hardest-hit Miami Valley communities: tight-knit Northridge. Beth Wentz and Timothy Walker raised their two children in the area as longtime homeowners in their first house together. On the night of the storm, Wentz and the kids clung together in the basement as a massive EF4 twister destroyed the house all around them. Walker had just started on third shift at a Clayton warehouse when his sister-in-law called. She told him the house was severely damaged, but his family had survived.

In this interview recorded months after the tornadoes, Walker recalls rushing home on pitch-black, debris strewn highways as another round of tornado sirens sounded to reunite with his family.

And finally, some good news. After a year of living in a hotel and then a mobile home while searching for permanent housing, things are looking up for Beth Wentz, Timothy Walker and their kids. Just a couple of weeks ago, they closed on a home in Greene County. Now, they’re busy painting and getting ready to move in. Walker tells WYSO's Jess Mador that after all the trauma, anxiety and financial strain of displacement, they can’t wait to put down roots again as a family.


Click here to see WYSO's original story about Beth Wentz, Timothy Walker and their two children.