JOPLIN, Missouri - Just minutes after 27-year-old Shandi Spencer walked into her Joplin home Sunday, it was gone.
"How did we all survive that?" Shandi asked through teary eyes Thursday, looking at the pile of rubble where her house once stood.
Shandi, her parents and two young nieces huddled in the basement of their home near 25th and Pennsylvania as the EF5 tornado barreled through the town, but the winds were so intense, the entire house collapsed, leaving Shandi buried in the pile of debris.
"I remember opening my eyes and I saw dark," she said. Her father, in a frantic search to find her, called out to her to tell her to keep screaming in an effort to quickly locate her.
"He couldn't even see me," Shandi said. "He didn't realize he was standing right next to me."
Shandi recalled what she said when her mother said to call 911.
"Look around, I'm pretty sure they know there's an emergency. I'm pretty sure they know we need help."
Shandi, her parents and her nieces all survived the storm.