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Cheryl Anderson

Nervous Florida residents gird for Charley: 'My parents were freaking out'

Don Paterson was sitting in his kitchen when Hurricane Charley did a "half-twist" on his single-wide trailer. It sent the microwave oven flying into his head, "then the refrigerator came down on top of me. Then I'm pinned. And then a huge gust came, and I'm unpinned." Paterson, a 68-year-old Army veteran, made it out of his home and weathered the storm behind a riding lawn mower. Debris hit the machine like shrapnel. His home destroyed, Paterson walked along Taylor Road with a dazed look and blood trickling from several head wounds. "Happy Friday the 13th," he said. Charley delivered its bad luck especially hard to Punta Gorda, a city of 15,000...