Van Zandt County man survives three deadly tornadoes - - Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville |ETX News

Van Zandt County man survives three deadly tornadoes

(Source: KLTV Staff) (Source: KLTV Staff)
(Source: KLTV Staff) (Source: KLTV Staff)
(Source: KLTV Staff) (Source: KLTV Staff)

For one East Texas man, the EF-4 tornado that tore through Van Zandt County April 29 was the third one he's survived in his life.

As clean-up efforts continue at what's left of his home and across multiple counties, he shared his history with fatal storms and his most recent struggle to survive.

The clothes on their backs and a slab of concrete, it’s all Pat and Jenneane Puckett have left.

"We were the only two things out, the only two things," Pat Puckett said.

"There is no way that we should be here to tell this story there is just no logical way," Jenneane Puckett said.

For 70-year-old Pat Puckett, the EF-4 tornado was an eerily familiar experience.

"This is the third one here," said Pat Puckett.

In 1957, he survived a tornado that killed 19 people in Silvertown, Texas.

"It killed my mother, my sister had her legs all broken up. I landed a half a mile from the house on top of a combine," Pat Puckett said. "I was 10 years old with a two by four splinter in this right leg."

Then again in his 20's, he survived another that left 26 people dead.

"1970, in Lubbock, Texas there was a tornado that dropped down right over Texas Tech stadium," Pat Puckett said.

In this most recent storm, Pat said he and his wife landed about 20 feet from their home. Once they found each other, despite multiple injuries, they were able to walk to the road and wait for help.

"God brought us through this for some reason," Pat Puckett said.

All day the Puckett's said friends and volunteers have been grinding down the trees on their property. But there is one, in particular, that they will treasure and reminds them of how they survived the storm.

"God put his hand over us and said you can take everything they own but you can't take them," Jenneane Puckett said.

The Puckett’s said they have found a home for sale near their old home that they plan to put an offer on. If that doesn't work out they plan to rebuild on their property.

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