Maple Heights native among survivors of deadly tornado in Moore, Oklahama; took cover under mattress

MOORE, Okla. - A northeast Ohio native is among those in Oklahoma who are picking up the pieces of their lives after a massive tornado tore through earlier this week.

"I looked over in that direction and saw approximately a thousand to two thousand feet of debris, and then I said, ‘oh crap this just isn't high winds,'" said Charles Maloney, who lives in Moore but is originally from Maple Heights.

Maloney lost his house in ground zero, like most of his neighbors. He's lived in Oklahoma a long time, but lines hung up to dry out his clothes were learned somewhere else.

"I remember in Maple Heights that we set up clothes lines and that's how we dry clothes, that's what we did... in Maple Heights, Ohio, where I was born," he said.

Charles amazingly survived by finding a small closet, then using a mattress over himself to protect from debris.

That (mattress) was over me. I pulled that out, so yeah, it provided enough protection that when the debris -- I imagine if I didn't have that I would have been seriously injured," he said.

Moore's neighborhoods are devastated, but many have family to help out. Maloney's family is mostly in Ohio, so he's grateful to have help stop by.

"It makes a difference. It's a very difficult time for people. I don't feel like it, because I don't have a family, but the lives are so disrupted," said Maloney.

Volunteers are everywhere, from everywhere. A young man from Chardon, Ohio, is among them, working with Carla Smith, a local from Norman with Operation Blessing.

"We've shared some hugs, some smiles, some tears and some prayers and that makes it all worthwhile," said Smith.

Maloney is still in disbelief of what happened.

"Monday I was laying around in bed taking a nap and thinking about what was I going to go eat tonight, watching TV and the rat of the week is chaos," said Maloney.

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