“A night to remember” is how 81-year-old Camiston Bishop described the events which led up to his house being flatted.
The Orange Hill Development, St James resident was forced to take shelter under his cellar as the intense weather system that impacted the island into Thursday morning, left him homeless.
The elderly man told Barbados TODAY: “When this thing start about half-past 10, I got up and I said ‘I hope the old ark [his home] here hold it own’, and all of a sudden I heard the cracking of the thunder and the fork lighting and I said ‘no let me try and get out’.”
Bishop recounted the moments which led up to his escape from the property.
“I got up and saw the disrepair and I walk out down the back steps and I went up underneath the cellar and said safety first, and I stand under there and I heard the noise and I said ‘Lord, I thank you I have life; whatever you desire for me I will come through’.”
Bishop said during a slight reprieve he took shelter by a neighbour until daybreak.
The sprightly gentleman said that even throughout the strong winds and heavy rains he was not afraid.
“I would have to be right in the heart of it to be frightened,” he said, explaining that in his younger days he was a labourer in North America and had witnessed far greater storms.
“I was in a field working and saw tornadoes right next to me, I saw flashing and flooding, I saw lightning cut poles in Canada…So I took care of myself, I wasn’t afraid.”
Bishop said his home was compromised about five years ago when the roof of the front house fell in.
“If you would have noticed, the house fall down and the front house ain’t blow nowhere. That top had already fallen in, that when the wind hit it from the south it push out everything on the sides,” the elderly man said.
Meanwhile, just a stone’s throw away in Endeavour #2, St James, a resident who asked not to be named said she desperately needed some help finding a new living situation.
She recounted: “Last night I was at work and my mom called and told me that the wind and stuff break down here [the house] and there was the coconut tree that was up in there that broke up the fences.”
“The house just crumbling and the paling came in through all of the bedrooms….It is very bad. We can’t be in the house because it is open up and things are going on right now, so there is no safety there,” the emotional woman added.
She said the family of three, including her elderly mom and teenage daughter, have nowhere to go.
“My mom is not as strong as she used to be….We just need some help,” she pleaded. ([email protected])