Earthquake hits hearts in Huntington


Charleston, West Virginia native, Brian Johnson and his wife, Norma, moved to Anchorage, Alaska, in 2006 to take care of Norma’s elderly grandmother.

Friday morning, a 7.0 magnitude earthquake hit near Anchorage that sent residents into a panic with shakes lasting over 60 seconds.

“There have been many earthquakes through the years that I can remember but none like the one I experienced today,” Brian Johnson said. “They usually ramp up, shake for a few seconds and then dissipate but this one was quite different. You could hear the tremor for a few seconds before it hit.”

Brian and Norma had just sent their young daughters out to catch the bus for school when the ground began to shake.

“It started out moderate and then turned violent,” Brian Johnson said.

They both ran to doorways in their home, and when the shaking intensified, the power went out.

“That’s when I had real fear of it and then it turned to dread when the wife told me that the girls may still be outside,” Brian Johnson said. “I brushed that aside as I had to see where the girls were and to make sure they’re safe. I ran out the door as the ground shook under my feet and met the girls as they were coming back to the apartment terrified and crying.”

Brian Johnson said the lights in their home were swinging so rapidly, the family was afraid they might fall on them.

Once the shaking stopped, the girls remained afraid as the aftershocks continued throughout the day.

“We are prepared if a very large one happens again,” Brian Johnson said. “The most important thing in all of this was that everyone was alright.”

Madison Davis can be contacted at [email protected]