Florida resident describes hurricane destruction

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CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (WDEF) – Many people across the Tennessee Valley have friends and family living along the Gulf Coast.

News 12 spoke with Bubba Griffith who lives just north of Pensacola.

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He has ties to our area.

Griffith did not evacuate his home, because he did not want to leave behind the elderly people in his neighborhood who didn’t evacuate.

Griffith said that they lucked out and didn’t deal with extreme weather.

But, he said his friends in the Panama City area did not fare as well.

Griffith said many of his friends on social media have posted videos and pictures of devastation.

He described a frightening Facebook live video taken by his daughter’s friend who was just east of Panama City when the storm hit.

“Her whole roof of her house blew off, half the house was destroyed and they started screaming and her sister was crying, ‘I’m not ready to die, I’m not ready to die.’ My daughter started crying, and she got upset because she knew the girl and it was just really sad. There’s been a whole lot of that, you know, going on here on the Gulf Coast. A lot of people that didn’t leave, that didn’t take the storm serious, and they got caught in a killer.”

Griffith said he hasn’t been able to reach his friends over the phone to see how they are doing because calls won’t go through.

He also said he’s been through many hurricanes, including Hurricane Ivan and Michael seems to be the worst.

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