Thuds. Whistles. Roars.
The sounds of Hurricane Irma crashing through the night Sunday and into Monday morning kept Hubert Bast and his wife awake as they hunkered down in their Brunswick home to ride out the storm.
“When those winds were blowing last night, those were the kind that were talking to you,” Bast said Monday, a cigarette clasped between his teeth as he began to clean up his yard. “Whispering and talking. It wasn’t pleasant.”
As dawn broke Monday, Irma continued bearing down on Glynn County. Whipping winds and pouring rains didn’t keep Bast from clearing the fallen limbs that banged against his roof throughout the night.
A flipped tent, a few fallen trees and debris were scattered around Bast’s property.
“It tore my little barn there apart,” he said, pointing to a small structure at the back of his home now barely standing and tilted to the left. “I’m going to go ahead and tear it down.”
Bast’s yard wasn’t the only one in his neighborhood along S Street littered with fallen limbs and debris, and he was quick to check on homes of neighbors who evacuated and help others begin the cleanup.
Neighbor Larry Hopkins didn’t have much damage, aside from a downed fence in his backyard, but as soon as the clouds began to clear early Monday afternoon, he was armed with a chainsaw and ready to lend a hand.
“I’m just helping people out,” said Hopkins, a retired city employee.
Around 3:15 a.m., Hopkins said he heard what he believes to have been a tornado come through the neighborhood.
“It was roaring,” he said. “It scared me so bad, I went in the bathroom closet.”
As the storm passed throughout the day Monday, many Brunswick residents began to emerge from their homes and assess the damage. Debris covered the streets and fallen trees blocked several roads.
Neighbors Davis Hinton and Steven Lawson stood in the middle of Kelwin Avenue, discussing the aftermath of the storm. Limbs were strewn around people’s yards and mailbox doors had been blown open.
“It could’ve been a lot worse,” said Hinton, who had one tree fall in his yard.
Hinton had already texted his neighbors who evacuated and informed them about the state of damage at their homes.
“The bad part’s over,” Lawson said as winds gusted, blowing his tied-back hair into his face and nearly stealing his neighbor’s hat off his head. “I can deal with this.”