BRYAN COUNTY, Ga. (WSAV) – For almost 10 years, Kimberly Austin has been capturing memories for her photography business. But when she’s not behind the camera, she’s responding to emergencies.
On April 5th, Austin was dispatched to assist with the tornado in Bryan County. It’s a sight she couldn’t put words to.
“We saw flipped over houses and things that you just couldn’t imagine something had come through so quickly and just done so much,” she said. “I couldn’t imagine losing everything I owned. Just, come home from work and it’s all gone. I have so many family heirlooms and so many pictures. I lost my mom last year and now all I have left is the pictures.”
Crews are almost done cleaning up debris from the EF-4 tornado, according to Bryan County officials. But there are some things that can’t be recovered, like photos.
To Austin, they are a way to tell a family’s story and keep it alive after loved ones are gone. It’s why she is now offering free sessions for the entire year to families impacted by the tornado.
“The insurance company can only do so much,” Austin said. “They can replace all the material things, but they can’t replace none of the sentimental things that they lost. And so I would like to replace some form of sentimental thing that they can look back at 20 years from now and have those family pictures.”
Austin said it’s amazing to see the outpouring of support for those who lost everything and it feels good to do her part in giving back.
“A lot of the stuff now is bulldozers and tractors out there picking up debris and that’s not anything we can help with,” she said. “I mean, I’m not equipped to do that. So I know what I can do and I know what I can offer.”
Kimberly Dale Photography offers family sessions, as well as graduation photos. To book a session, click here.