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Monsoon storm blows roof off church, causes $500K in damage

Posted at 5:16 PM, Jun 27, 2016
and last updated 2016-06-27 21:18:47-04
A midtown church has a lot of cleaning up to do after Sunday night's storm caused about $500,000 in damage. 
 
The Covenant Generations Church is located on Tucson Boulevard just north of Grant and may have been the victim of a wet microburst. 
 
That caused metal framework on the church's playground to fall down and blew off about half of the sanctuary's roof. About two inches of water flooded the building. 
 
"[I] came inside and it was just like a waterfall pouring through here," said Joe Herbster, the church's facilities manager.
 
Herbster says the water poured through the open roof, drenching expensive equipment. 
 
"Our speakers were worth $25,000 alone," he said. Anything that was on the main stage according to Herbster was ruined, that included all of their musical instruments, lighting, amps and more.
 
He says he arrived at the church Sunday at about 7:30 p.m. along with 70 other church members who had to quickly place tarps on the roof. This after enough rain fell to completely flood Tucson Boulevard, closing down the street. 
 
"About 20 feet of our roof [was] just floating down Tucson Boulevard," said Herbster. "And got stuck in the corner, we had to tear it up last night at about 11 o'clock." 
 
Part of the church's roof was still sitting in a neighbors front yard Monday morning about a block away. 
 
"No one was here, thank God, when it happened about 7," said Herbster. "Everybody was off the property so that was a good thing." 
 
The church said it could take about six to eight weeks to repair all of the damage. Herbster says they had good insurance that will likely cover the cost. In the meantime, they plan to hold service in a secondary building or under a tent in the parking lot.