NORFOLK, Va. - Tamika Procter said she is thankful to be alive after a tree crashed through her apartment and pinned her down on Friday. The tree came down due to Hurricane Dorian's winds as it brushed up the coast.
"I will never forget that, ever," Proctor said. "I just thank God that I’m here right now because I could have died."
At the time, Proctor's daughter and little cousin were with her. Her daughter rushed to get their landlord.
Ring doorbell camera footage showed the moment she frantically knocked on the door to get their attention. The landlord's girlfriend, Ashleigh Gagnon, answered the door and rushed up the stairs to help free Proctor.
"Ashleigh has been great," Proctor said. " She’s the one that jumped into action, jumped the gate and ran upstairs. She was a real big help."
Proctor was hospitalized but has since been released. She has a broken finger, a broken arm and bruises on her leg and arm.
Proctor said she also swallowed a piece of insulation from when the ceiling came down, which causes her to cough. She said doctors told her she should be back to normal within a week.
The whole experience, she said, is something she will never forget.
"I still could see it when I close my eyes," Proctor said. "I still could smell it, the insulation. Even though it’s not gone, I could still smell it and see it when I close my eyes.
The house is condemned, and Proctor lost everything she and her relatives had - clothes, food and furniture, just to name a few things. Now, Gagnon sprang into action again, but this time to help Proctor and her family.
"If I were in her situation, losing everything the way she did, I would want someone to help me," Gagnon said.
Gagnon set up a GoFundMe page on Monday. The goal is to raise $5,000 to help Proctor recover her losses.
"She’s been a great tenant for Daniel (landlord), and she’s been reliable. She’s even had her son cut the lawn when he was deployed," Gagnon said. "We wanted to find a way to help her out as much as we could."
Gagnon added she frequently texts Proctor to see how she is doing. She also asked her if she could set up the GoFundMe page for Proctor.
"I didn’t want to be intrusive, but I also wanted to do something" Gagnon said. "So, I asked her and she said, 'Yeah of course; thank you so much.'"
"It means a lot," Proctor said. "When something like this happens, they jumped into action doing what they had to do."
If you would like to help Proctor and her family, you can contribute through the GoFundMe page found here.