Family Plans Funeral for Man Killed in Storm in Coahoma County, MS

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(Coahoma County, MS) A family is forced to plan a funeral just days before Christmas. A possible tornado ripped through the town of Rena Lara in Coahoma County.

The strong wind blew a trailer over crushing and killing 49-year-old John Sanders.

"I just can't believe that it happened. It happened so fast," said Morgan Ingram, Sander's nephew. "He didn't make it to see Christmas."

Ingram was at an early Christmas get together with his family on Saturday night. Sanders went to bed early. He had work in the morning.

"He was on the other side and got pinned to a tree," said Ingram.

Ingram said within minutes, the wind picked up, blowing the mobile trailer on its side and trapping his uncle between his mattress and a tree. The other seven family members inside the home got out with scrapes and bruises.

Fire Chief James Lee was friends with Sanders. He and other firefighters spent hours trying pull him out, but it was too late. Sanders was dead.

"I cried," said Lee. "It was bad."

Lee checked on the family Sunday morning. He helped them salvage what they could.

"We pulled Christmas presents out of the trailer all day. We pulled a body out last night, and Christmas presents out today," said Lee.

The family said most of their gifts and belongings were ruined from the rain or were crushed when the trailer toppled over including pictures of Sanders.

Ingram said this year, things will be different for his family. Christmas was his uncle's favorite holiday.

"It's going to be a rough year us," said Ingram.

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