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Tiny West AL town cleaning up after apparent tornado

Businesses destroyed in Marengo County
Published: Apr. 1, 2022 at 7:05 AM CDT
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FAUNSDALE, Ala. (WBRC) - A small town in Marengo County is cleaning up after most of its downtown area suffered damage Wednesday from an apparent tornado that swept through the area. The good news is there are no reported injuries.

Strong winds peeled roofs off of a few businesses including the well known Faunsdale Bar and Grill just off Alabama highway 25. Debris was scattered about and a few letters missing from the sign at the town’s post office.

Faunsdale has nearly 100 residents. A lot of them heard the roar the roar of the wind. Town councilor Robert McKee says he is saddened to see all the damage but hopeful the town can get back on its feet.

“With 98 people it’s definitely a tight knit community. Everybody knows everybody. We’re all having to step up and clean up and look forward to the next chapter. We just have to find out where that is and how to get there but we’re going that way,” McKee said.

The Faunsdale Bar and Grill holds a special place in the heart of this small Alabama town. It’s hard for owner Jennifer Cassity to put the emotions into words, seeing all the damage around her.

“It’s hard to look at this and think about the time..the blood sweat and tears as we all say and this is what I’m looking at right now,” Cassity said.

The bar and grill has been a part of her life for nearly 30 years. Cassity started out working here like many in this town. She’s owned the popular restaurant for the past 7 years.

“We salvaged what we could last night and that’s what we worked on today is getting the things out of here that weren’t damaged,” Cassity said.

“It really is a family place, a gathering place and a lot of fun,” Suzanne McKee remembering the good times at the bar and grill.

McKee lives right around the corner from the bar. She and others are now raising money through the Faunsdale Foundation to help the bar and grill and other businesses impacted by the storm get back on their feet.

Volunteers also spent the day cleaning up the place they call home.

“Makes me really grateful for the love that this community shows for each other,” McKee said.

As for Cassity, she’s trying to remain optimistic about the bar and grill’s future.

“I want it back. Everybody wants it back. I think we can make that happen. It will take time. I feel frozen right now. Like what do it do next? What is my next step? I’m literally going to have to take it one day at a time,” she said.

The Marengo County EMA Director says National Weather Service crews should be in their area over the next day or so to survey the damage.

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