Reality Sets in for Rockwall Families Whose Homes Were Destroyed

As clean up continues across North Texas from this week's storms, reality is sinking in for several Rockwall families who lost everything.

Three homes on Panhandle Street were wrecked by 95 mph winds on Wednesday, rendering them unlivable. Roofs were blown off, exposing rafters. Soon, the houses will need to be torn down.

Inside the homes are memories and possessions that will be lost.

As the shock wore off, each of the three homeowners and families came by Thursday to see what they lost and salvage what they could.

Jerry Harwood lives next door, and the straight-line winds tore the mortar from the side of the house where he and his wife have lived for eight years. The strong wind gusts also broke 11 windows.

While the Harwood family waits for a structural engineer to decide whether their home can remain standing, Jerry and wife Janet Harwood cleaned up Thursday with the help of friends and co-workers. They picked up the pieces, brick by brick, and there is hope that they can rebuild.

"I think out of everything, the house can be rebuilt," Jerry Harwood said. "But when you lose those personal mementos and everything, you know, when you get as old as some of us are, that's a lot of memories you don't want to lose."

Jerry Harwood said that if the structural engineer decides the home can remain standing and be rebuilt, the builder, D.R. Horton, wants to use the mortar that was torn off so that it can match.

"We're just taking it step by step," Harwood said.

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