‘I was praying to myself’: Woman escapes death after tree falls on home

Nadiya Raheem says a branch pinned her to her couch and she had to crawl out her back door before first responders could help her.
Published: Apr. 2, 2023 at 3:21 PM EDT
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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE/Gray News) - A woman in Kentucky said she barely made it out of her house alive after a tree fell on it during Friday night’s storm.

Nadiya Raheem said she was relaxing at her Louisville home Friday night when the weather started worsening.

“I was praying to myself, ‘Lord, let me get out of here to get me some help,’” she said.

Raheem, who didn’t want to be on camera, told WAVE that her prayers and quick thinking kept her alive late Friday night after mother nature sent a tree crashing into her house.

“I was laying on my couch and watching TV,” Raheem said. “It was raining, and a bolt of lightning struck a tree and it fell in my living room, and came through my window. I was trapped in my living room.”

When the tree fell, Raheem said it landed on her right leg and pinned her to the couch. The tree was so big, it blocked the path of two streets and crushed three cars before crashing into her house.

“It was scary,” Raheem said. “It was like something in a movie. I was terrified.”

She said she called 911 and then crawled her way to safety so first responders could rescue her.

“I had to try to roll up from underneath the tree because I was pushed up in between the tree,” Raheem said. “And the couch had me pinned down so I had to roll up from under there and crawl to my backdoor because I could not get out my front door because it was covered in tree limbs.”

Raheem was left wearing a brace on her fractured leg after the ordeal.

She said her story of survival couldn’t have happened without a higher power.

“I’m totally grateful God spared me at the end of the day,” Raheem said. “He, uh, that’s all I’m glad for is that I’m alive and here and God, I guess it’s just nothing but God.”

Raheem said she was told that her house isn’t safe to stay in.

The Red Cross gave her a place to stay until Monday but, after that, she said she doesn’t know where she will go.