ALEXANDRIA, La, (KALB) - On Monday, an EF-3 tornado swept through parts of Cenla.
Many people are now left picking up the pieces of homes that once were.
One family in Pineville lost almost everything, but have chosen to remain positive and see the good in their current situation.
Pineville resident Ed Cooper's life was forever changed by a simple phone call he received Monday afternoon.
"This friend said your house is destroyed Ed. I said what are you saying? He said the storm has destroyed your home,” Ed said.
The EF-3 tornado swept through his neighborhood, leaving behind damaged homes, scattered debris, and a new perspective for Ed just days before Christmas.
"Even in the midst of all of this, it truly is a season of joy,” Ed said.
After receiving the news that his house had been destroyed, Ed rushed home.
"I was not allowed to turn into my street," he said.
It was hours before he could get inside and assess the damage with his wife, Joanne.
"When we walked inside the house and we really could smell the pine tar and when we looked, when I saw the den, that was breathtaking," Ed said.
A space where Ed, Joanne and his mother in law Christine have spent hours together, changed in an instant.
A tree replacing the recliner where 91-year-old Christine always sat.
“One of the trees came down on top of the recliner where she always sits,” Ed said.
As Ed and Joanne walked further into the home, all they could see was destruction.
"A tree in the den, a tree in a bedroom, a tree in the foyer, yeah."
Still, Ed and Joanne are choosing to have a positive attitude.
On Monday night, they went to a local restaurant to eat their first meal of the day. Their server asked how they were doing.
"I said well for a couple who had their home destroyed, we're okay."
And what happened next brought Ed to tears.
"When it came time to bring the check, he said the meal was on me."
In a time of uncertainty and change, Ed never lost his faith in humanity.
"Through it all what was so amazing and we hear this so often but it's true, has been the incredible goodness of people."
He thanks God that everyone in his family is alive.
"I'm relieved but exhausted but believing more than ever in the goodness and greatness of God,” Ed said.
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