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One Month Later, Cold Not Stopping Rebuilding In Washington

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Susanna Song Susanna Song
Susanna Song serves as a general assignment reporter for CBS 2...
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WASHINGTON, Ill. (CBS) — One month ago tomorrow, a tornado tore through Washington, Illinois. Today, homeowners are rebuilding.

CBS 2’s Susanna Song reports not a lot of time has passed but it sure looks different from four weeks ago. Winter has slowed things down, but it hasn’t stopped the work in Washington.

One month ago, Mike Brownfield didn’t know if he’d survive the tornado.

“The first two weeks we walked around in shock and now it has hits home, one we’re fortunate we’re alive,” said Brownfield.

He spent the last month not only getting all the debris off his lot, he’s also been designing his new house.

In the next week or so, his home of 12 years will get a new chance. His will be one of the first to go up and even all the snow and ice won’t deter him.

“It is time to roll. My son is a senior in high school and going away to college in August or July and I want this done before he leaves,” said Brownfield.

“If you can get trusses up, sidewalls and things, obviously, you can’t cant plaster in cold weather, but as much as they can get done and get it closed in the closer they are going to get. It takes about 6 months to build a home,” said Washington Mayor Gary Manier.

But the Washington Mayor realizes before you can rebuild, you need to clear the way.

Mike Brownfield says if he can get contractors in before the end of the year he’ll be moving in to his new home by July.

Elsewhere in Washington, Jon and Betsy Crow had made plans to adopt a baby boy from Indiana and were worried that they would be rejected when they lost their home to the tornado.

“Just because we didn’t have a house didn’t mean we still didn’t have a place for him in our hearts,” Betsy Crow says.

It turns out, the birth mom agreed. They’re still in line to become the adoptive family.

“What’s important is that we have each other and we’re possibly going to have a new little guy,” Jon Crow says.

The couple already has a daughter, Lyla.

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