Son texts 'goodbye mama' as deadly tornado hits - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

Son texts 'goodbye mama' as deadly tornado hits

Posted: Updated:
A neighbor found Hunter unconscious on the ground. (Source: KARK) A neighbor found Hunter unconscious on the ground. (Source: KARK)
Twenty miles away from Vilonia, Wood begged for a response from her only son. (Source: KARK) Twenty miles away from Vilonia, Wood begged for a response from her only son. (Source: KARK)
Fifteen people, including Hunter, died in the devastating storm that hit Arkansas on April 27. Fifteen people, including Hunter, died in the devastating storm that hit Arkansas on April 27.
  • More Local NewsLocalMore>>

  • Residents take up firearms in Country Aire

    Residents take up firearms in Country Aire

    Friday, August 29 2014 12:09 AM EDT2014-08-29 04:09:40 GMT
    Residents in Country Aire mobile home park off Highway 397 say crime is taking over the neighborhood. It's sparked many neighbors to openly carry firearms, as a way to deter crime.More >>
    Residents in Country Aire mobile home park off Highway 397 say crime is taking over the neighborhood. It's sparked many neighbors to openly carry firearms, as a way to deter crime.More >>
  • Reaping the health benefits of volunteering

    Reaping the health benefits of volunteering

    Thursday, August 28 2014 11:53 PM EDT2014-08-29 03:53:38 GMT
    The death of a spouse or retiring from a long-time career can leave seniors looking for their place as they navigate through a "new normal." KPLC's Britney Glaser reports volunteering can bring fulfillment and health benefits to the person willing to give back to others.More >>
    The death of a spouse or retiring from a long-time career can leave seniors looking for their place as they navigate through a "new normal." KPLC's Britney Glaser reports volunteering can bring fulfillment and health benefits to the person willing to give back to others.More >>
  • I Wanna Know: YMCA facility in Lake Charles

    I Wanna Know: YMCA facility in Lake Charles

    Thursday, August 28 2014 8:27 PM EDT2014-08-29 00:27:00 GMT
    (Source: Theresa Schmidt/KPLC)(Source: Theresa Schmidt/KPLC)
    For decades, the YMCA facility on Kirby St. was a thriving center in downtown Lake Charles. Since Hurricane Rita, the building has been sitting idly.More >>
    For decades, the YMCA facility on Kirby St. was a thriving center in downtown Lake Charles. Since Hurricane Rita, the building has been sitting idly. More >>
FAULKNER COUNTY, Ark. -

(WMC) - As Jeffery Hunter took shelter in the bathroom from an EF4 tornado ripping apart Vilonia, Ark., he decided to spend his final moments text messaging his mother.

"I have a text on my phone as the tornado was hitting, 'Goodbye mama,' " his mother Regina Wood told NBC affiliate KARK. "First he said, 'Mama, I'm so scared.' "

Fifteen people, including Hunter, died in the devastating storm that hit Arkansas on April 27.

It destroyed 328 homes just in Faulkner County. The tornado tore houses from foundations; after hiding in closets and other windowless rooms, many residents walked out into rubble.

A neighbor scanning the damage found Hunter, 22, unconscious on the ground. Twenty miles away from Vilonia, Wood begged for a response from her only son.

"I kept saying, 'Are you okay? Are you okay? Let me know. Let me know.' No answer," said Wood, taking comfort Hunter thought to message her. "That [sending a message] was the most precious thing a son could do for a mother."

The UCA senior was with his father and stepmother, both of whom were seriously injured, when the tornado hit.

Flags fly across the town to honor Hunter and others killed in the storm.

Copyright 2014 WMC Action News 5. All rights reserved.

Powered by WorldNow