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Published May 26, 2011, 04:40 PM

Devastating Joplin, MO, tornado hits close to home for Hawley grandmother

Cindy Wickee is back from Joplin after driving there to pick up her three grandchildren who lost their home and possessions in the tornado, but walked out alive.

By: Kevin Wallevand, WDAY

Cindy Wickee is back from Joplin after driving there to pick up her three grandchildren who lost their home and possessions in the tornado, but walked out alive.

Miles from their storm-torn home, Ethan, Kayla and Oliver Wickee are getting used to living with Grandma. And they will likely be here for the summer.

Cindy Wickee drove down from Hawley to Joplin to pick up her grandchildren after the tornado swept through their neighborhood as they all huddled together in a bathtub, hoping to survive.

"They thought for sure they were going to be gone. They kept crying out, 'God protect us' and he did," Wickee said.

3-year old Oliver just remembers a big, bad tornado.

What is left: one wall. The house, its contents, the cars, all gone.

So this will be home for the summer. Grandma Cindy more than happy to help in the recovery effort. This as her son, Luke, tries to finish medical school and take tests, with his notes, books and computer blown away and brokes, blocks or miles away.

On the other hand, the important stuff survived.

"I am so blessed, even when they fight, like right now. It is okay, they are alive, they are here," Wickee said.

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