Tornado victim returns to classroom

By WEEK Producer

Tornado victim returns to classroom

January 8, 2014 Updated Jan 9, 2014 at 12:00 PM CDT

PEORIA, Ill. -- Its been almost two months since Sally Williams has been able to do what she loves, teach her class of second graders at Hines Primary School.

"Its been very traumatic, digging through debris, finding my belongings," Williams said.

Sally and her family lost their home in the tornado that hit Washington in November. Wednesday was her first day back at work, finally giving Sally a chance to return to her normal routine.

"There was no normal for us for the last month-and-a-half," Sally explained. "I'm so glad to be back, listening to that alarm clock, getting up, getting my kids breakfast, getting my son to high school, getting to work here and seeing all of these beautiful smiling faces that are so eager to learn."

One of the things they're learning about is Williams' ordeal.

"I now understand that she went through a bad situation and had to be gone for a while," said second grader Rachel Kettle.

While she was gone, Sally's students reached out to her with cards and letters they made in class.

"They also had a lot of questions. They wanted to know where I was, if everything was ok, so I've been answering a lot of questions. That's why I decided to show them what I had gone through and why I was gone for so long," Williams said.

For now the Williams' family has settled into a rental home. And her extended family, the kids she teaches, are thrilled to have her back.

"I missed her. She's one of the best teachers I ever had," said Kettle.

"I think we're going to have a wonderful day," declared second grader Donny Osmini.