NASHVILLEM, TN (WSMV) - One year ago today, many lives changed forever here in Nashville. An EF-3 tornado ripped apart buildings, houses, and also lives.
News 4 had a chance to speak with one woman who lost her home in Germantown. As she works to put her life back together, she has vowed to use her pain to help others.
"It is extremely difficult. And even a year later, I'm still suffering from a lot of PTSD." Jolie Yockey was on the couch with her dog Lottie the night the tornado hit her Germantown home. She tells me she heard a noise that haunts her still. "We heard a noise that sounded like an explosion. At the time, we didn't know what it was, and then everything started to fall on us." She said.
Yockey has pictures from that night showing all of the damage. Insulation fell from the ceiling. A window sits on a pile of debris in her kitchen. But these pictures only tell half of the story. What a picture can't tell you is the pain and raw emotions that still linger. Those emotions came through in her words as she continued to walk us through her nightmare. She was running through a river of water coming from her ceiling.
"And then I remember distinctly Lottie stopped in the middle of the waterfall, and I had to turn around and just say I need you to trust me….."
At that point all of the emotions from a year of pain, a year of frustration, a year of therapy came to a head. Jolie broke down in tears.
They say time heals all wounds. But some injuries need more time to heal. It's been 365 days and counting for Jolie, and she struggles with the memories. She doesn't struggle with the confidence she has gained in herself and other people—especially those neighbors who came to her rescue on the worse night of her life.
"This is an incredible neighborhood. An amazing city." Yockey said. And when I asked if that was the light in her darkness, her answer was absolute. "Yes. This is truly a city where people love and care for each other." Said Yockey.
That love and care have led Jolie to be there for other Nashvillians during their times of need. She works in a building affected by the Christmas Day bombing. She is now that voice of comfort for many people and businesses that lost everything.