Channel 5 News
Nashville, TENN. - A handful of customers and store employees huddled inside the Mapco convenience store off Trousdale Road Saturday night, wondering when the electricity would be restored. As of 10:45 p.m., many on the south side of Nashville were still in the dark.
"(The) ceiling caved in, as you can tell, and my sign kinda blew away," said Alex Martinez, owner of the nearby Mama Mia's restaurant. "We'll be OK. Nobody got hurt, and that's the most important thing."
Martinez said his popular, Italian eatery was half full of diners when the storm hit around 7:30 p.m. Saturday. Apparently not intimidated by the violent straightline winds - 70 miles per hour, according to Martinez's estimation - thunder, lightning and torrential downpour of rain, Martinez said some his customers remained in the restaurant to finish their meals.
The Mapco store, just next door, was hit hard, too. A man under the gas station's fueling canopy watched his new Audi sportscar fall victim to a falling gas pump. The entire standing structure, containing a trio of gas nozzles, toppled onto the Audi that the young man confessed he'd been driving only the last couple months.
Just a stone's throw away, a bit closer to the Crieve Hall neighborhood, more damage was evident. A closed-for-the-weekend Marathon gas station lost a few signs to the storms. And across the street, some trees and limbs were toppled, but no structural damage was evident.