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Residents grateful to be alive after Elk City tornado

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ELK CITY, Okla. - One day they're celebrating an 11-year-old's birthday, the next they're cowering in the closet as mother nature unleashed her wrath.

"We jumped into this closet. And I held the doors tight to protect my family," tornado survivor Matt Klem told NewsChannel 4.

The tornado also damaged a neighborhood country club and oil business district.

"My boss pulled his truck inside. Just in time," said employee Byron Foster.

More than 100 homes and businesses were wiped away by the forces of nature including Dr. Pete Stover's house. Their family squeezed ten people into a 4 x 6 above ground shelter.

"My wife ran out to grab her purse. She almost didn't make it back in time. I locked the door just as the tornado hit," Stover said.

Residents who have been affected say, they're just thankful to be alive.