Courtney gym rebuild to begin

By Kitsey Burns Harrison -

COURTNEY — One local family is raising funds to cover medical expenses incurred after an accident during the tornado clean up in the Courtney community.

“On July 21, my father-in-law Chris Melton took at 15-foot tumble off a ladder, rebuilding a barn that the May 2017 Courtney tornado destroyed,” explained Jessica Burk on a GoFundMe page set up by the Melton family.

Melton sustained broken ribs and a collapsed lung in the accident. Donations may be made to the family at

Others in the area continue to clean up and rebuild, with some living in campers until their homes can be repaired, said Burk.

The largest structure destroyed by the tornado was the gymnasium at Courtney Elementary School. Yadkin County Schools Superintendent Dr. Todd Martin said rebuilding the gym will be a lengthy process. The school system is working with the insurance company to begin the project.

“We’re going to be able to basically construct a new gym at little to no cost to the district,” Martin said. “From every indication we’re getting, our insurance is going to pay for the reconstruction of the gym.”

The first step in the process will be to demolish what remains of the structure.

Martin said that was expected to be completed by the end of August.

Several groups also have offered donations to benefit the project, and Martin said any donations given for Courtney would go towards the new gym. Impact Yadkin presented a substantial donation to Courtney school on Monday night that will go towards paying the insurance deductible, Martin said.

Kitsey Burns Harrison may be reached at 336-679-2341 on Twitter and Instagram @RippleReporterK.

By Kitsey Burns Harrison