GONE: Michael Hennessey is still waiting to get back into his Baird St home after the Melbourne Cup day storm tore its roof off.
GONE: Michael Hennessey is still waiting to get back into his Baird St home after the Melbourne Cup day storm tore its roof off. Craig Warhurst

Father, son face long wait to go home after storm

ON MELBOURNE Cup day this year, carer Michael Hennessey was sitting in his living room getting ready to watch some television.

His 84-year-old father, a double leg amputee, was in the bedroom relaxing.

That didn't last long.

Minutes later the pair was scrambling for cover as the roof was torn from their Baird St house and the ceiling collapsed under the weight of torrential rain.

Mr Hennessey said he had never seen anything like storm on November 7.

"I heard the tornado coming up the road,” Mr Hennessey said.

"Next thing it just hit ... the ceiling came down and that was it.

"I thought that was the end. It was a very frightening experience.”

The 60-year-old's father's bedroom ceiling also collapsed.

SEEING THE LIGHT: Inside Michael Hennessey's Baird St home.
SEEING THE LIGHT: Inside Michael Hennessey's Baird St home. Craig Warhurst

Unable to escape the wreckage, his father lay on the bed looking up at the stormy sky, rain pouring in.

While Mr Hennessey rushed to get a wheelchair to help his father escape, his neighbours rang 000.

"All of my neighbours came racing over, the ambulance came and by that time we had dad out in the wheelchair ... he was okay,” Mr Hennessey said.

When the storm subsided Mr Hennessey went to the front of the house to assess the damage.

The force of the 150km/h gusts rolled the roofing iron back like a banana peel.

Yesterday Mr Hennessey said it would be at least 12 months before he could get his father back in the home.

Insurance assessors have locked the home up because of the danger of asbestos contamination.

"I have put dad in Gracehaven,” Mr Hennessey said.

"At least he is safe there.

"I'm in a motel until Monday and I'm not sure where I'm going to go then.”

BUMPER ISSUE: Make sure you grab a copy of Thursday's NewsMail, with a 16-page Storm Season Survival Guide, plus eight pages on the reaction to the same-sex marriage announcement.
BUMPER ISSUE: Make sure you grab a copy of Thursday's NewsMail, with a 16-page Storm Season Survival Guide, plus eight pages on the reaction to the same-sex marriage announcement. Jay Fielding


Man builds mobile showers for city's homeless

premium_icon Man builds mobile showers for city's homeless

Lions step in to help Bundy homeless

MYTH BUSTED: Bundy police squash violent robbery rumours

premium_icon MYTH BUSTED: Bundy police squash violent robbery rumours

Rumours of violent break-ins have run rife through the region lately

What the NewsMail team said they'd spend $100m on

What the NewsMail team said they'd spend $100m on

What the Bundy news team would do if they won lotto

Local Partners