Interview with Leah starnes, wonder connection science ambassador

Tuesday, September 18, 2018

“The storm here [in Tabor City] started kinda getting bad on Thursday morning. “

How did you feel about the storm?

I wasn’t really that scared because my grandparents live in a brick house [and we went to their house during the storm].  At one point I woke up in the middle of the night because something hit the window.  And the power went out, which I was fine with that.  We had a generator but it wouldn’t power everything at the same time, so while you cooked you had to turn off the A/C. 

What about your little brother and sister?

They were tired of being trapped inside- they are outdoors kids just like me and being in a house for three days was taking a toll on them mentally and emotionally- they were all fussy.  Drew, who is two, kept saying“Outside please. Run go.”   Cara just turned one.

When do you go back to school?

We don’t know when we are gonna go back to school.  We will be out for the rest of this week and maybe start back next week. 

What’s it like there?

A lot of people can’t get out of their houses.  There’s one person that lives a mile or so from us in a mobile home and they are stranded, they can’t leave their house. It got rough.  We are some of the only people that our house didn’t get completely destroyed.  One of my friends that I went to school with doesn’t have a house anymore. 

My poor little cousin (he’s 4 years old) he broke his arm during the storm and they had to take him out in the storm to go get a cast.  One of my friends, his mama stepped outside and fell down and broke her ankle.  It’s like everything happens when it doesn’t need to happen. 

[Right now] there’s a helicopter- they are looking for people who are stranded. There’s a ladder hanging down so they can pick up people if they are stuck.

You can’t cross the state line unless you are from SC and have an ID saying where you live.  Because that is a life that they would be responsible for.

Are the police at the state line?

No. The Army. They have a big truck there and are checking IDs on both sides.

What about your house?

We have a giant hole in our roof.  All it is now is flooding and backwash is coming in.  The river is all the way flooded up to the road.  We can’t leave without driving through at least three inches of water.  We put a chainsaw in the back of my car so we could drive around. My best friend’s dad did that too.

We have a pond in our backyard.  I could probably cast a rod out into our yard and catch dinner.  If you look in the picture, there’s a bunch of trees, you can see spots where fish can come up. 

How do you feel about all of it?

My best friend had to evacuate her house.  Its really upsetting. 

She called me crying about the flood and I told her material things are less important than family and lives.

Any advice for the next storm?

Practically wise- have a stronger roof.  I have no control over that but my parents do.