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Residents undo what storm did

(ran NS, S editions of B)

Shawn Jones spent Tuesday carefully piling the same aluminum cans at Alcoa Recycling that he had stacked Sunday.

"We did it the other day, but it got messed back up," said Shawn, 12, whose father has a business behind the recycling plant on Clearwater-Largo Road.

"Messed up" could describe a number of homes and businesses in the area around Belleair, Largo and south Clearwater after Monday's high winds and rain. Residents spent Tuesday cleaning up the debris. Aluminum cans, paper and glass littered yards and were wedged into bushes.

Belleair Fire Chief Robin Millican said a Belleair resident suffered a minor shoulder injury after he was picked up by the tornado and "got knocked around a little bit by the wind." The resident later went to the hospital on his own, he said.

Largo and Clearwater police reported no injuries.

On the whole, Largo Police Sgt. Don Holcomb said, the tornado's force was minimal, leaving a small trail of short-term power outages and minor property damage along Clearwater-Largo Road.

Robert Woolever, who moved into his house on Smith Street a week ago, spent Tuesday cleaning his trash-strewn lawn and repairing his damaged roof and windows.

"Our yard looks like a dump," said his stepson Jason Scarnecchia, 14.

Businesses along Clearwater-Largo Road near Ponce De Leon Boulevard sustained the most damage. Carl Kilgore's first reaction was to "leave it locked and go back home" when he saw his shop, Flashman's Service Automotive Center, Tuesday morning. The building had shifted four inches to the left.

"We're looking at a different location," he said. "The building is unsafe."

Tim Halm, a roof consultant who stores some of his belongings at the neighboring Kein Construction warehouse, needs to reconstruct the strip of roof that blew off.

"Looking at the damage that a tornado can do, I'd say we came out pretty lucky," he said. "Fortunately, nobody was hurt, but I'd still like to be making money today instead of spending it."

Greg Gaudet, manager of Alcoa Recycling, said he was glad his cleanup will consist only of picking up cans.

"It's a mess. That's about it," he said. "I'm just thankful that nothing really bad happened to the shop. Messes can be cleaned up but it's not going to cost us anything but time to do it."

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