Grandpa, grandson survive after tree falls on van during storm

Published: May. 24, 2022 at 10:13 PM CDT
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TEAGUE, Texas (KWTX) - People in Freestone and Limestone counties are still picking up the pieces from Saturday night’s storm.

Daniel Sanoja and his grandson Case Williams narrowly escaped death when high winds tore through Teague.

“It was just scary, it all happened so fast,” said Williams.

Sanoja went to go pick up his grandson as the storm was approaching.

A few minutes later, they were stopped at a stop sign on Corsciana St. when part of a tree fell on their van.

Williams, 10, was in the passenger seat.

“Suddenly the van just bounced, ‘whoomp!’” said Sanoja. “Case, he said ‘oh my gosh’ and he moved to the back when we realized it was a big old tree that fell on top of us.”

Not just any tree--a massive branch.

“Thank God we had that rack (on top of the van), it moved the whole rack and that’s probably one of the things that helped us a lot,” said Sanoja.

Sanoja estimated the tree branch was 50 to 60 feet.

Amazingly, both walked away mostly unscathed--Williams said he had a few minor scratches from the glass.

“I heard kind of a cracking sound and kind of a ‘swoosh’ because of the leaves I guess,” said Williams.

Williams and Sanoja went back to the scene Tuesday where the tree still remains.

“I’m just glad that didn’t happen two feet back because it would have smashed both of us,” Sanoja told KWTX.

They weren’t the only Teague residents impacted by the storm.

Many in town were seen picking up debris Tuesday.

The roof was torn off the Teague Insurance building, the post office also suffered damage.

Sanoja’s van will be fixed Monday.

He says he’s just thankful that’s the only thing of his that needs fixing.

“I heard people die from a big tree like that falling down, but God was watching for us obviously,” said Sanoja.

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