72-year-old Earnestine Reese suffered only a broken hip. Her modest home wasn't so fortunate. 

By Meghan Overdeep
March 4, 2019

After a catastrophic F3 tornado ripped through southeast Alabama on Sunday, Earnestine Reese found herself feeling thankful.

Hooked up to an oxygen tank and visibly shaken, the 72-year-old was filmed Facetiming with her family moments after she was pulled from the wreckage of her Lee County trailer. Sitting amongst the absolute devastation that had been her home just minutes before, Reese expressed her gratitude and awe.

“You tell God thank you. You hear me boy? Tell the Lord thank ya,” Reese can be heard telling her family in a now-viral video (below). “Hey, no planning nothing but the power of God! Tell God thank ya.”

Birmingham television meteorologist James Spann shared the moment on Twitter this morning.

“This was shot 20 minutes after the tornado hit her home in Lee County,” Spann wrote alongside the emotional clip. “She suffered a broken hip and is at the hospital now with surgery scheduled for this morning.”

The tornado, which claimed the lives of at least 23 people and left more than 40,000 homes and businesses without power, touched down in Beauregard in Lee County, Alabama Sunday afternoon.

“We’ve still got people being pulled out of rubble,” Lee County Coroner Bill Harris told AL.com on Sunday. “We’re going to be here all night.”

This story is still developing. Our hearts are with Ms. Reese and everyone in Alabama and Georgia affected by this storm as we await further news and ways to help our neighbors.