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Sanford man safe, struggling after storm-propelled bathtub ride

Posted April 22, 2011

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— A Sanford man lost everything but his life Saturday when a tornado picked him up from his second-floor apartment and dumped him outdoors.

Billy Hardaway huddled in his bathtub as the storm approached. "Next thing I know, I was hurled in the air, with the tub and all, spinning around."

While he was unhurt, Hardaway's apartment and all his belongings were blown away by the tornado as it tracked northeast from Lee County to the state capital.

Hardaway and others are depending on the generosity of family, friends and organizations like the Red Cross to rebuild their lives.

At the Horner Boulevard Kmart, volunteers served up lunch Friday and gave out groceries for all comers. 

barbecue Red Cross serves in Sanford

"This is a blessing sent from God," said Darryl Barkley. "When the community can come together and help people in need, I'm very grateful for it."

Turnout was light as an afternoon rainstorm passed over Sanford, but Red Cross representatives planned to be on site until 6:30 p.m.

Hardaway is staying with a friend, but for something as small as a toothbrush, he came to the Red Cross. "Anything they can help with, it will be appreciated," he said.

The Salvation Army is collecting clothing and furniture for storm victims at all stores, including the Sanford location at 305 S. Steele St.

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  • Dartman1955 Apr 22, 2011

    I'd keep that tub, just in case.

  • RB aka Spirit Warrior Woman Apr 22, 2011

    Wow! Now there's a ride I don't want to take.

    Thank God he made it through.

    Praying for all.

  • dontgetmestarted Apr 22, 2011

    sillywabbitthepatriot...this one's for you. LOL! Save a truck, ride a bathtub.

    I pray that he (and other's) finds the strength to pick up the pieces and start over. I know it's tough to loose everything, been there, but at least you have your life and that's a blessing to you and your loved one's!

  • dontgetmestarted Apr 22, 2011

    Glad he was o.k.!! I bet THAT was a ride!