A 16-year-old boy from Elgin, Texas, was on his way home from a job interview at Whataburger when a tornado took over his truck and threw him “like paper”, he recalled, looking at the now-viral video of his red 2004 Chevrolet Silverado.
The whole ordeal, teenager Riley Leon told KTBC-TV, left him “speechless.” But he attributes his survival to God.
“[I’m] I’m grateful to be here,” Leon said. “[I’m] Grateful God gave me another chance because better things will happen in the future. Never let little things get you down because bigger things are coming.
Looking back, the boy said he wished he had taken the bad weather warnings more seriously.
He told the outlet that he “never expected” something like what happened to him this week to happen.
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Fortunately – and miraculously – Leon walked away from the heartbreaking incident with nothing more than a few scratches on his arms. The experience, however, was difficult to process.
Leon said the red truck he was driving had significant sentimental value, admitting he cried knowing he was likely total as a result of the crash. The Chevy truck has been in the family since Leon’s little sister was born.
“This truck,” he said, “helped me and my dad get to where we are now.”
If you missed the incredible footage of the incident, captured by storm chaser Brian Emfinger, here it is:
Chevrolet should immediately replace its Silverado advertisements with these images. pic.twitter.com/0Hz1Xa5lYi
— Joel Berry (@JoelWBerry) March 22, 2022
Now safe at home, Léon says he is happy to be reunited with his parents, his little sister and his older brother.
Leon is already back at school and hoped no one would have ever found out about the crash, which might have been possible if the video footage of the jaw-dropping ordeal hadn’t spread like wildfire across the streets. social networks. This is also how his family learned of the accident: they saw the video and recognized the truck.
Another storm chaser, Marcus Reynolds, saw the incident unfold and spoke briefly with Leon after the ordeal.
Reynolds recalled that Leon was “in shock” after being lashed by the EF-2 tornado. The storm chaser told Fox Weather he let the teenager use his cell phone after the scene unfolded.
That’s when Leon called his parents to tell them it was him in the video.
“That’s when I called my mum and dad, and they were like, ‘Are you okay?’ And I’m like, ‘Yeah, but my truck is gone,'” he said.
Looking back, Leon said the number one lesson he learned from the accident was: “If the weather is bad, stay home. No matter how important it is to you, stay home. Your life, your life matters more than other things.
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