Tornado victims get a "fresh" start - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Tornado victims get a "fresh" start

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February 20, 2003

Mitchell County - Imagine all your clothes scattered in your yard, hanging in trees and lying in mud. It sounds absurd, but that very thing happened to a South Georgia couple.

On Sunday, a tornado sucked up and spit out their trailer, including their wardrobe. Tornado victim, James Harper, says, "Clothes scattered everywhere, some on top of trees."

James and Eileen Harper's Mitchell County home, ripped apart. He says, "I suppose clean everything up as best as we can." Including their wardrobe. Dry clean worker, Gloria Anderson, says, "The sooner you can wash dirt out, the better off you are."

Anderson's Cleaners in Pelham has put the Harper's clothes through another whirlwind. Anderson explains, "Twelve little machines and dryers, just started going down the line, assembly line."

They washed more than 300 items. She says, "I was pleasantly surprised at how easy they did clean, the clothes had not been allowed to dry."

The Harpers' don't have to pay a dime to the cleaners. Mrs. Harper is a dispatcher for Mitchell EMC and they agreed to foot the bill. So, with a little support and suds, the Harpers' can get a fresh start.

Workers at Anderson's Cleaners say this isn't the first time they've had tornado customers. They had several families drop off clothes after the Camilla Valentine's Day tornado in 2000.

posted at 6:00PM by kathryn.simmons@walb.com