'I just sat in my recliner and I said my prayers': Concord residents grateful to be alive after devastating tornado

NOW: ’I just sat in my recliner and I said my prayers’: Concord residents grateful to be alive after devastating tornado

CONCORD, Wis. (CBS 58) -- A tornado touched down early Thursday morning, July 29, in the town of Concord, Jefferson County. Homes and barns were destroyed and debris was left everywhere. Cleanup is now underway. 

“Actually I feel pretty good,” said Paul Zastrow, who is 60 and has lived in Concord his entire life.

Zastrow isn’t focusing on what’s gone.

“All this can be replaced,” Zastrow said pointing to the damage to his home and property.

He says his focus is what’s still here.

“I’m disabled so I wasn’t able to go to my basement so I just sat in my recliner and I said my prayers,” Zastrow said. “And the next thing I knew the storm was through and I had a tree through my sunroom. The good Lord has blessed me.”

Just down the road, a similar attitude from Tim Brack.

“Alarms came on, we went downstairs, boom,” Brack said describing the storm.

Brack and his three kids moved into their house in April.

“Hot tub used to be there,” Brack said pointing to an empty spot. “It’s over in the field now.”

The attached garage was ripped from the house, the mudroom too.

Still Brack says when he cried after the storm, it was tears of gratitude because looking around he has no idea why his house is still mostly standing.

“We all see this as, especially me, as God spares us,” Brack said. “He has us here for a reason still.”

Cleanup and repairs will take some time, but no one will be doing it alone.

Dakota Ebert lives about 15 minutes down the road from where the tornado hit. He doesn’t know Zastrow, but sees him selling sweet corn. Ebert drove over to Zastrow’s to bring water and offer help cleaning up.

“I feel bad for him,” Ebert said. “And I said hey he’s got all this destruction, let’s help a guy out.”

When Ebert showed up to help, Zastrow offered him the only three ears of corn hat survived the storm.

“There all a bunch of great people who will come together and get this placed cleaned up and you’ll never know there’s a tornado that came through here,” Zastrow said.

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