Platteville Tornado Victim Returns Home One Month Later

By Katie Wiedemann, KCRG-TV9

PLATTEVILLE, WISCONSIN — Every single step Carrie Gates takes through her Platteville apartment could be considered a miracle.

Gates said, “I had 8 fractured ribs. 2 collapsed lungs. I broke my back. I broke my neck.”

But she says the fact that she’s even alive is miracle.

“Something hit me so hard,” said Gates. “When I landed I just slammed my body together and I know I was just all broke. That’s how I felt. My head started filling up and I thought ‘oh my God, I am going to die.’ I don’t even know if anybody else was really alive because nobody was around. “

On June 16th, that EF-2 tornado ripped her home right off its foundation. Still inside the home, she landed several hundred feet away. That left her unable to move.

Gates spent the past month recovering at University of Wisconsin Hospitals and Clinics in Madison. That’s where she first took the steps she’d thought she’d never take again.

“You either fight or you give up and I felt like I had that decision to make,” said Gates.

Back in Platteville, she says her next goal is to walk around to everyone who helped her and simply say “thank you.”

“To have something like this happen has been kind of my wake up call to say ‘hey, you have a great life and you’re a strong person and you’re here for a reason’,” said Gates.

Carrie’s friends set up a “Carrie and Josh Gates” benefit fund at Dupaco Community Credit Union in Dubuque.

l Comments: (563) 583-9999; katie.wiedemann@kcrg.com

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