Roberta Giazzie watched in shock from the third floor of her home in Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn, on Sunday evening as the winds snapped off a large portion of the roof, and a tornado ripped through her neighborhood, knocking down trees and flooding streets.
“I’m just excited to get outside,” said the 73-year-old woman, a Dominican-American who still had some plants and plants outside.
But the real mess would be inside the living room, she said. About three-quarters of the interior ceiling was gone. The floor looked to be more than a foot under water.
Inside, Ms. Giazzie saw the room where her husband died, with a “very gruesome” stretcher with John Giazzie’s body on it that had been placed there, she said. That was another shock for Ms. Giazzie, whose husband died of colon cancer five years ago.
“I always thought I was supposed to be here,” she said. “It just took so long.”
More shocking still was what the tornado left behind in its wake: missing glass from storefronts, pieces of wood blown in high winds that broke on hot asphalt. In all, two nursing homes lost portions of their roofs, along with eight homes. Trees were split in half or completely uprooted, and homes were covered with road debris.