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Woman survives harrowing ordeal at Hard Rock Hotel work site

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    NEW ORLEANS, LA (WGNO) — Saturday’s building collapse took the lives of 3 workers and forever changed others in an instant.

Among the survivors of the Hard Rock Hotel site is a local woman who’s thankful to be here after a harrowing experience.

Chanyra Williams, who worked at the site said, “I thought about my girls. One is about to graduate high school and the other is away in college and I just thought about, I don’t want nobody to call them, to say that I’m dead, ya know?”

For Chanyra Williams, Saturday morning at work was just like any other morning. She was operating the buck hoist elevator when the unthinkable happened.

“By me being inside of the hoist, I didn’t actually know what was happening. I just knew something was falling. I didn’t know what was going on. I didn’t process that it was the building that collapsed on me, until afterwards when they got me out, and I looked up.”

Chanyra says she credits quick thinking by her co-workers and brute strength are why she’s here today.

“I don’t know how they got me out. They just pried it open enough and they told me stick my arms out and I just remember them pulling until they got me out.”

Chanyra is home after being hospitalized with injures to her back and neck. Those injuries may heal but her memory of Saturday will always be there.

“It’s traumatic because it just keeps replaying all over again”

What felt like a lifetime most probably happened in minutes, but her prayer was a simple one.

“God don’t let me die like this…that’s all I kept thinking…don’t let me die like this.”

A GoFundMe page has been set up to help Chanyra Williams and her family. Click here to donate

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