PANAMA CITY — With the sound of chainsaws already blaring in the background, Robert Shores of Julie Drive in the Bayou George area dug through the rubble of what used to be his home of more than four decades.
“We’ve lost everything,” Shores said, as he looked at his fishing boat that was half buried under what was the garage. “We haven’t got anything left.”
But he was thankful that he and his family, who were in the house when it collapsed, are all OK. He escaped with just a few scrapes on his arm from the wrath of Hurricane Michael.
His wife Betty along with his daughter-in-law Christine and three young girls were in the house when the roof started to fly off.
“I was in the hallway already when the roof started to come off,” Christine said.
At that point, she got the girls and threw them in the tub and covered them with the shower curtain before covering them with her body.
“I wasn’t going to let anything happen to my babies,” she said.
She told them to keep their heads down and cover their eyes.
“I was scared ... I was like crying scared,” the 7-year-old girl said.
In the meantime, Robert was holding the front door closed.
“I held the door for two hours ... I had to,” he said. “But I did a lot of praying in those two hours.”
The Bayou George area, in northern Panama City, was hit hard by the hurricane with trees and power lines down across the entire neighborhood and most of the homes receiving some damage. A mobile home in the area was flattened by the storm.