The body of 62 year old Josephine Phyllis Pavone was recovered Thursday afternoon from the rubble of her home on Alpine Lane in the Holiday Haven area, where she died Wednesday after a tornado struck.
The residence, a two story structure located on the side of a hill, collapsed during the storm.
According to reports, survey teams were sent out Thursday from the National Weather Service to assess the damage and confirmed that the storm spawned an EF1 tornado in DeKalb County, taking a path from near DCHS and Allens Ferry Road to the Cookeville Highway area including Pine Grove Road, Holiday Haven, Ponder Road, and Puckett's Point to Back Bone Ridge and Falling Water Road in the Johnson's Chapel Community
The recovery operation at the scene of the fatality began shortly after the storm on Wednesday but was halted later in the evening. It resumed Thursday morning but because of the location, rescue workers had challenges to overcome. "We had challenges," said County Fire Chief Donny Green. " We started work this morning in the operations phase of the recovery and worked all day trying to gain access to the victim and get the body of the deceased removed and transported to the hospital. This afternoon we were able to accomplish that through the use of some technical rescue personnel brought in from Task Force 2 (Out of Nashville) and also from the Putnam County Structural Collapse Team and the Putnam County Rescue Squad. We've had a lot of other agencies that's been here in supporting roles helping get the victim's body removed and to accomplish this in a safe manner because we've had a very unstable situation here throughout the course of this whole operation," said Chief Green
The house was a two story structure with the front part at ground level and the rear of the home on stilts, according to Chief Green. "The way the house was constructed on the side of a hill, it was difficult to deal with considering the fact that we had trees that were still hanging over and on the structure endangering our rescuers that were attempting this operation. We had to look at all the aspects of scene safety in getting all this done," he said.
Pavone's body was found amid the rubble of the home, according to Chief Green. "I would describe the house as being a rubble pile. There was no construction that appeared to be what a house would normally look like. The house was totally collapsed and the body was inside the rubble," he said.
The sudden death of Ms. Pavone, who lived alone on Alpine Lane, was a double tragedy for the family. Pavone's brother, Frank Pavone had just passed away earlier in the day on Wednesday at DeKalb Community Hospital.
The funeral for Ms. Pavone will be Saturday at 5:00 p.m. at DeKalb Funeral Chapel. Following the service, the body will be cremated. Visitation will be Friday from 3:00 p.m. until 8:00 p.m. and Saturday from 3:00 p.m. until 5:00 p.m. A nurse by profession, she was preceded in death by her parents, Phillip and Mary Agnes Michela Pavone; a sister, Gloria Engelhardt; and a brother, Frank Pavone.
She is survived by children, Kari and husband Jacob Ashford of Liberty, Joseph LaRocco of Melrose Park, Illinois and Patricia and husband Mike Saylor of Bartlett, Illinois. Grandchildren, Michael Saylor, Antonio LaRocco, Claudia Ashford, and Taylor Ashford. Sisters, Darlene and Rosemary Pavone, Geraldine Lipkie and brothers, Anthony and Tommy Pavone.
DeKalb Funeral Chapel is in charge of the arrangements.