Denise De Mello has seen her fair share of dust devils.
Living a fair amount of her life in southwestern Arizona, she said they were pretty much a common occurrence.
De Mello and her husband Rusty Baker, a Los Alamos National Laboratory employee, live on Deer Trail in North Mesa. They have been there for close to 11 years.\
And on Wednesday, De Mello saw something she would never forget.
“I was talking to my husband on the phone in our exercise room and this wind hit our house. It sounded awful and I looked out the window and all I could see was dirt. It was pretty frightening. I thought our windows were going to break and it went away after 45 seconds.”
De Mello then described the dust devil.
“It was huge,” De Mello said. “It was hundreds of feet tall. You could see the funnel and dirt was whirling around. It was white or silver shiny and it seemed like there were lots of pieces of paper.
“It was fascinating and horrible all at the same time. I kept seeing the stuff going round and round and the dirt kept going higher and higher. After a while the dirt dissipated a bit.”
De Mello then went outside and the dust devil disappeared. But soon she saw it reappear by the water tower on Barranca Mesa.