Putnam County tornado survivors reunite with lost belongings

Posted at 7:00 PM, Oct 10, 2020
and last updated 2020-10-11 07:17:11-04

COOKEVILLE, Tenn. (WTVF) — It’s been more than seven months the March tornadoes struck Middle Tennessee, killing 25 people. Putnam County was hit the hardest.

This weekend at the Putnam County fairgrounds survivors will have a chance to reunite with their long-lost items.

The event will be held Saturday and Sunday from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Women’s Building at the Putnam County Fairgrounds. Victims should bring identification and proof of a tornado-affected home.

Dustin and Maggie Bays found a family photo they never thought they would see again.

The couple lost their home back in March after the deadly tornado tore through their neighborhood and scattered their things.

"She saw the tornado coming and screamed," Dustin Bays said. "We got our son and ran into the bathroom."

The survivors said they're thankful to be alive and they know things are just things, but add it's incredible to be able to get some of them back.

"It's nice to be able to retrieve that stuff because it means a lot to us," said Dustin Bays.

There were also thousands of photos recovered from the tornado.

Tennessee Tech Archives digitized all photographic materials that were found after the tornado into one online location. The link for the site can be viewed by contacting the archives and asking for access through one of these methods: