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PENDLETON, Ind. — The mood is that of optimism in Pendleton now that public leader in the Madison County city have let residents back in to start cleaning up the damage left behind by Monday evening’s tornado.

The National Weather Service confirmed late Tuesday morning that an EF-2 tornado ripped through the city causing significant damage in the form of damaged or even destroyed houses, down power lines and utility poles, and toppled trees.

Many in Pendleton see this as an opportunity to help each other out.

“It’s an opportunity to love your neighbor, right?” John Zelme said to WISH-TV. “So, we don’t question why the storm happens, right? We’re people of faith here, but if it’s an opportunity to love a neighbor, that’s what we’re out here to do.”

Anything was being done to help, from helping pick up tree limbs and debris to bringing food for those who were hard at work all day Tuesday. One problem though was there weren’t enough tools to go around to help in the clean up.

The word got to Dan Roe, who to Pendleton drove all the way from Tipton with a pick-up truck full of chainsaws.

“I think the guy I know only had one saw,” Dan Roe said. “So I brought 10 saws. And then all these guys, they, as soon as I pulled in, they just grabbed a saw and took off.”

Even with Tuesday’s efforts, there are still a few days of work left, but at the end of the day, the people of Pendleton know their neighbors are watching out for them and are always willing to lend a hand. Or a chainsaw.

“I think that most times we forget that life’s about people,” Brandon Godbey said. “And when people need things, it doesn’t just have to be about something catastrophic like this. Get out, get to know people. Help people out. And we’ll recover from this.”

If you’d like to help out Pendleton, you can make a donation or call 2-1-1 Wednesday to find out how you can help out physically.