Just got in and started getting plugged into the world. I took my nephews out to eagle creek from July 4th till yesterday. We were caught in the storm going down lost cove trail. It was terrifying, but we made it out ok. Trees were snapping everywhere, branches flying past us. We found an area in the trail that seemed relatively safe. The old fat grapevines and middle sized dead hemlocks were the most dangerous. We stood still and looked up and yelled whenever we saw something flying. It was dark, but everytime a strong gust would blow up the cove and the trees all laid down it became eerily white all around. Then it just seemed to pour buckets. Lost cove has a ton of trees down below the campsite, and Eagle creek trail between 97 and the first switchback above it has some many blowdowns (several of which are HUGE) that I lost count. I'll post pictures when I get them up.
Was your brother the lone hiker, short black beard, going up the AT from the fontana area and down Eagle creek?