Two years after tornado, man says storm changed outlook

by: Vicki Graf Updated:

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MECKLENBURG COUNTY, N.C. —

It has been two years since a powerful tornado tore through eastern Mecklenburg County into Cabarrus County.
 
“I could hear a big roaring and I could hear things hitting the side of the house,” said Marvin White, whose house was destroyed. “Next thing I know, there was a big crash from where the tree came through.”
 
The tornado happened in the early morning hours of March 3, 2012. It carved a four-mile path of destruction. The National Weather Service determined it was an EF-2 with winds up to 130 mph.
 
The damage at White’s house is not visible on the outside anymore, but he said the scars from that night are still there.
 
“Now when we have a storm, I don’t sleep,” he said.
 
White recalls the community coming together and helping to rebuild after the storm.
 
“Trees were everywhere,” he said. “The fire department was tremendous. They cut their way down the street to get over here.”
 
White said he has a different outlook after the storm.
 
“I don’t take a lot of things for granted that I used to,” he said. “It makes you appreciate things a lot more.”
 
Eyewitness News caught up with the Stevens family, who were shaken from the tornado. The children were sucked from their home and thrown in different directions.
 
Two years later, the Stevens family have settled into a new home.
 
The National Weather Service never issued a tornado warning for the storm because its radar is so far away. The tornado actually flew under the radar.
 
The storm is why Channel 9 invested in the local dual-pol radar to warn people whenever a storm is in their neighborhood.