Moore tornado survivor Vernon Mills and family survived killer twister in storm cellar

MOORE, Okla. - As the EF-5 tornado roared across the Oklahoma terrain, residents were told to seek shelter underground.

That's exactly what Vernon Mills and his family did.

The Mills family moved to Moore 15 years ago, but he said this was his first encounter with a tornado.

"I could see the cloud right over there through the kitchen window," recalled Vernon. "I said, 'Let's get in there and get in there now.'"

His family of five and their do waited for the storm to pass in a dark metal box with 200 mph winds whipping debris at the cellar door.

"The door started shaking, so I shoved them back in there," said Vernon.

PHOTOS: The aftermath in Moore (

When the storm finally passed, they emerged from their shelter and saw what the tornado left behind. And that was enough for Vernon to see.

"I'm not going to rebuild here. My neighbor next door is not going to rebuild that one there."

Wherever the Mills family goes from here, Vernon said he will have a shelter in his next home.

"Like I told all my family, I said, 'If y'all don't have a storm shelter, you better put one in.' And, I'll never have another house without one."

Many cities like Sand Springs are asking residents to register their storm shelters so they can make sure no one gets stuck underground with debris blocking their exit.

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