Camila Smith

No doubt, Camilla Smith is happier now.

Certainly she’s happier than when the tornado ripped the roof off her aging house on Pearl Street. A tree fell through.

“That’s the only thing that held me down” during the storm, she said.

She spent 18 months in a FEMA trailer.

“Trailer was very nice,” she said, smiling. Smith, age 52 and living on disability, is cheery like that.

She had no insurance. She was broke. But she put her name in with Habitat for Humanity and was chosen. Volunteers built her house at 24th Street and South Joplin Avenue. Everything new. Everything better, even a concrete storm shelter in her side yard.

Monthly payment: $350, utilities included.

“I got blessed,” Smith said.

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