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'Kind of a Miracle': Storm Chaser Rescues Family After Tornado, Pledges to Help Rebuild Home After Terrifying Ordeal


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A storm chaser is speaking out about seemingly miraculous circumstances surrounding a family he rescued in the wake of a deadly Mississippi tornado.

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Jonny Gabel, who has been chasing storms for the past five years, described a harrowing ordeal when he helped pull family in Rolling Fork, Mississippi, out of the rubble.

Now, Gabel told People he’s planning to help the family members rebuild their decimated home.

“Their home is completely destroyed,” he wrote in a GoFundMe. “100% of the funds will be used to help them or help other victims affected by tornados. The funds will be used to build them a new house (if insurance doesn’t cover it, or if there’s some sort of financial obstacle) or the funds will be used to get them into a new home as soon as possible.”

Gabel told People how he and others decided to shift into rescue mode Friday after initially chasing the storm, heading to hard-hit Rolling Fork to help pull people from the rubble.

He recalled hearing someone yell, “I need help! Help! Please come help me!” So, he went over to the house from which the screams were coming and discovered an elderly woman sitting up in her bed, surrounded by devastation.

Her roof and a wall were gone and, remarkably, she was virtually unscathed aside from a cut on her thumb. Gabel and others helped the woman get out of the house.

As it turns out, he wrote on GoFundMe that the “entire family survived without injury” — something that seemed to absolutely stun him.

“I just said, ‘Thank God you all survived. This is kind of a miracle,'” Gabel said. “Because just a hundred yards away, the Dollar General was just completely destroyed.”

He has vowed to help the family rebuild and will donate his labor to help them secure a new home. Here’s more about his fundraiser.

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