SPRING HILL, Tenn. (WKRN) — Curtis and Brittany Koning woke up Christmas morning to one of the most frightening moments of their lives.
“It literally felt like the building moved,” said Brittany Koning, who was in downtown Nashville when a massive explosion took place just blocks away. “It literally felt like our bed moved, the wall moved… Like it literally felt like it moved us.”
The Konings remember every smell, sound, and feeling of panic.
“It’s Christmas morning and we had just went out the night before to check out some different bands downtown,” Brittany explained. “We decided to rent an Airbnb so we didn’t drive home because we were drinking. We stayed the night and you just wake up to the loudest sound you’ve ever heard in your life.”
Curtis Koning said that while the explosion is over, there are still everyday occurrences that remind him of the terror.
“The sirens going by triggers a memory,” he said. “I was at work today and the building was shaking — triggering a memory. I don’t know how long it’s going to take to get over that.”
The Spring Hill couple said they will now reach out to the Federal Bureau of Investigation, after the agency announced resources for victims of the Christmas Day bombing. A federal response team met with more than 200 people Tuesday to assess their needs, including shelter, clothing, business assistance and referrals for counseling.
Program manager Beci Elam said the majority of needs so far had come from business owners and residents seeking help with property damage. In addition, Elam said the FBI was assisting with boarding up properties, getting residents medications, and replacing identification documents like driver’s licenses.
The team also offers on-the-spot crisis intervention to help victims process the traumatic event.
“It was hard for me to reach out,” Brittany Koning said. “It’s not something I’ve ever done before. So I didn’t know if it was silly of me to be feeling this way, you know? I didn’t know if it was normal to feel this way?”
The FBI is working to compile a list of community resources to share with those impacted by the bombing. In the mean time, anyone needing assistance can contact the FBI Memphis Field Office or the Knoxville Field Office to speak with a victim specialist.