Sister of Moore, OK resident shares tragic story

JONESBORO, AR (KAIT)- A Jonesboro resident shares the story of her sister who lives in Moore, Oklahoma and was impacted by the tornado Monday.

But the storm was not the only tragedy the Oklahoma family went through that day. Lois Howard- Lanham also lost her husband to cancer early Monday morning.

Jonesboro resident, Donna Gandy said she has been praying every since she got word of the tornado hitting Moore, Oklahoma.

"Lois has always toldme do the best you can, you do your best and God will do the rest," Gandy said.

Donna Gandy's older sister Lois Howard Lanham has lived in Moore since 1975. And like a lot of the community, she lost her home and her possessions that day but shealso suffered a greater loss earlier that morning.

"Earlier that morning at 9:19 am her husband Frank Lanhampassed away," Gandy said.

Frank died Monday after a long battle with cancer and then a few hours laterthe tornado hit. Lois and her family took cover in a storm shelter in OklahomaCity.

"Her car was totaled like the other cars there, windows wereblown out of the house, there was a horse laying dead that had come from nowhere," Gandy said.

"She wants everyone to know that it is total devastationdown there and that all the families everyone involved needs prayers."

Lanham's granddaughter attended Plaza Towers ElementarySchool, one of five schools destroyed by the tornado.

"She is a morning student, if she had been an afternoonstudent she would have been in that school," Gandy said.

For the first time yesterday, Donna heard her sister'svoice.

"I was actually in a store and it was all I could do to notstart shouting in the middle of the store," she said.

The tornado's winds topped 200 miles per hourdestroying a path 17-miles long in only40 minutes. Lanham does not have any information about the condition ofher home.

"I said Lois how canyou go through this losing a husband that morning and then that afternoon beinghit by a tornado and being homeless,  andshe said Donna you just have to do what you have to do," Gandy said.

Gandy said her sister is one of the strongest people sheknows.

"She is holding up fantastic she is doing a lot better thanI think any of us would do," she said.

Gandy says she has a message for her sister.

"That we wish we could be there with her and we love hervery much, and we just can't imagine."

Donna said her sister is trying to get enough money to bury her husband and provide for her family.

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