“It was like God dragged two fingernails across the the land.”

Read to the end to find a chance to win a prize…maybe it’ll cheer us all up!

A tornado went about 30 miles to the north of me on Monday afternoon. Grim business, tornados. Mean ugly storms. I’m fine, no harm done. The title of this blog is a quote from a man who lived in the town where the tornado hit, Pilger, Nebraska. Two dead, many more critically injured. Main Street businesses wiped out. Awful.

“It was like God dragged two fingernails across the the land.”

I have a writer friend there, who was out of town for the day, mercifully, but her home is gone, wiped out.

Twin Tornados

They talked a lot on the news about how rare a double tornado like this is, and BIG twin tornados too, that lasted a long time. So I started reading about tornadoes and thought I’d share some facts. Possibly the least humorous post I’ll ever share.

First, I sort of think of tornadoes as a Midwestern thing. but there are been deadly tornadoes in every state but Alaska, Hawaii, Nevada, California, Rhode Island and Vermont.

And I guess I sort of think of tornadoes as an American thing but the deadliest tornado in history was in Bangladesh. in 1989, 1300 people died.

The first confirmed tornado in the United States (thought it wasn’t the United States then) was in 1671 in Massachusetts. The pilgrims landed in 1620, so they got 50 good years and then the trouble started.

Matt Suter of Fordland, Missouri holds the record for the longest distance anyone was carried by a tornado who lived. On March 12, 2006 he was carried 1,307 feet, which is 13 feet shy of a quarter mile.

The Oklahoma City suburb of Moore was hit by devastating tornadoes in 1973, 1999, 2003, 2010, and 2013 — okay, I know you love your home, but I think you’d better just close down and move away.

The earliest recorded tornado in Europe struck Rosdalla, Ireland on April 30, 1054.

The earliest known British tornado hit central London on October 23, 1091.

Do we ever hear of tornadoes in Europe? I can’t remember hearing of them. I would think a tornado, as much as they talk about it in a small Nebraska town on the national news, you’d think they’d talk about it in Europe if one hit.

A tornado in what is now Mexico City, hit on August 21, 1521, two days before the Aztec capital’s fall to Cortés. Do you suppose that was the reason it fell? They were still recovering from a tornado?

The Super Outbreak–yes, it has a name–a large area of the east central United States and extreme southern Ontario in Canada on April 3 and April 4, 1974. 148 tornadoes in only 18 hours that hit  Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Ohio, Kentucky, Tennessee, Alabama, Mississippi, Georgia, North Carolina, Virginia, West Virginia, and New York. At one point, as many as 15 separate tornadoes were ongoing at the same time.

And while we’re talking about destructive storms:

Hail Damage

Anyone want to buy a car? They’re on sale.

Blair, Nebraska hit by a massive hail storm a couple of weeks ago. Including a huge car dealership with 4500 vehicles.

I suppose I should mention that I have two books releasing this month.

10948 StuckTogether_mck.inddStuck Together

(Book #3 of the Trouble in Texas series)

When a lawman who values order gets stuck with a feisty crusader who likes to stir things up, there’s going to be trouble in Texas!

Now that she’s settled in town, Tina Cahill is determined to get Broken Wheel’s saloon closed for good. To that end, she pickets outside the place every afternoon. Unfortunately, so far no one has paid any attention.

Vince Yates earned the nickname "Invincible Vince" because of his reputation for letting absolutely nothing stop him. But Vince is about to face his biggest challenge yet: his past has just caught up with him. His father, mother, and the sister he didn’t know he had show up in Broken Wheel without warning. His father is still a schemer. His mother is showing signs of dementia. And his surprise sister quickly falls for one of Vince’s best friends. Vince suddenly has a lot of people depending on him, and Tina doesn’t approve of how he’s handling any of them.

With nearly every other man in town married off, Vince finds himself stuck with strong-willed Tina over and over again. Of course, Tina is the prettiest woman he’s ever seen, so if he could just get her to give up her crazy causes, he might go ahead and propose. But he’s got one more surprise coming his way: Tina’s picketing at the saloon has revealed a dark secret that could put everyone Vince loves in danger.

and

Four Weddings and a Kiss

Novella collection with my Petticoats and Pistols buddy Margaret Brownley,

also Robin Lee Hatcher and Debra Clopton.

FourWeddings3Four best-selling romance novelists bring tales of feisty heroines, stubborn heroes, and unlikely love in the Wild West. Get lost in Four Weddings & a Kiss today.

“Spitfire Sweetheart” by Mary Connealy
Maizy MacGregor is an unruly tomboy. When she causes an accident, injuring neighbor Rylan Carstens, she becomes his unlikely caregiver. Rylan has never noticed how pretty his infuriating neighbor is, and he never expected to fall in love.
“Love Letter to the Editor” by Robin Lee Hatcher
Molly Everton is the outspoken daughter of the town newspaper’s owner. When her father brings in an outsider to be editor, she tries to drive him out of town. But Jack Ludgrove is not intimidated. He’s resolved to change Molly’s mind about him–as an editor and as a man.
“A Cowboy for Katie” by Debra Clopton
Katie Pearl is uninterested in men and love. But she needs help on her ranch and hires Treb Rayburn, a wandering cowboy looking to make a buck. Will Treb change Katie’s mind?
“Courting Trouble” by Margaret Brownley

Grace Davenport is either the unluckiest woman alive–or a killer. When
her third husband is found dead, she is arrested for his murder. Attorney Brock
Daniels isn’t interested in the case–until he meets his beautiful client. Only a
miracle will prove her innocence, but the joining of two lonely hearts
may be their saving grace.

I’M GIVING AWAY ONE COPY OF EACH OF THESE BOOKS.

TO GET YOUR NAME IN THE DRAWING,

TELL ME OF THE CLOSEST BRUSH YOU’VE HAD WITH TERRIBLE WEATHER.

www.maryconnealy.com

 

Website | + posts

Author of Romantic Comedy...with Cowboys including the bestselling Kincaid Brides Series
https://petticoatsandpistols.com/sweepstakesrules

57 thoughts on ““It was like God dragged two fingernails across the the land.””

  1. In central Wisconsin, Waushara county, August 1992 a tornado came within 1/2 mile of our home. 2 people died and the tornado was on the ground for over 21 miles. Luckily most of it was rural land but several businesses were hit too. It happened the same day as Hurricane Andrew hit Homestead,FL so we didn’t receive a lot of national news coverage. We were without power for over two weeks. Lots of tree damage. It was a hot sticky day then around 8 pm the temperature dropped. We received a lot of hail and it got quite windy too. We heard the distinctive train sound!

    In 2004, we had the eye of two different hurricanes go through Stuart,FL. We live on a barrier island, Hutchinson Island. On September 5th the eye of Hurricane Francis went just south of us and hit Sewall’s Point. On September 25th Hurricane Jeanne’s eye came through just north of us. We were unable to live in our condo for over 3 months. There are 4 floors in our building. The back half of the roof flew off. The people on the top floor lost everything. We had heavy water damage and had to replace all the cabinets and flooring. We also lost some possessions but luckily not everything. We stayed through Hurricane Jeanne at my mom’s condo near downtown Stuart. It was scary. I remember seeing green neon lights when the transformers blew. Trees were permanently bent sideways. Sand filled swimming pools and blue tarps were on almost every roof.

    October 25th, 2005 we were hit by the backside of Hurricane Wilma. Only minimal water damage.

  2. My sister and I were home alone at the house when a large hailstorm went through. There were tornadoes that day to the south of us, but none here, just hail. The sky was green and the wind and rain were crazy, though not as bad as yesterday.

  3. Mary, serious or funny, I always love your posts. I had no idea about some of the facts in your post. Thank you for sharing. In 1982, Paris, Texas was hit by a tornado. Lives were lost and much destruction was done. We lived about 20 miles down Hwy 82 in Clarksville which they were saying was going to be hit next. I had a four year old and a three week old in a small interior closet while my husband was outside “spotting” one if it came. I was so afraid but luckily, Clarksville was spared. You never know with a tornado, they will hit one spot or one house and leave another unharmed. We have since moved to a house with a basement so that is where I head every time there is a threat of a tornado.

  4. Where we live, we normally don’t get disastrous weather events. We had an earthquake 3 years ago. The first my grandma ever experienced one and she was 100 years old.
    We had a derecho (not even sure I spelled that right) 2 years ago but my house wasn’t affected. We’ve been VERY lucky!

  5. I saw this story on the news and it really scared me. I’m glad you’re ok, but pray for those effected by it. I fear spring storms. I live in Texas, so we get tornadoes a lot too. I’ll never forget my first experience with one. I was just a kid in school. Everyone was told get in the hallways and against the wall and cover your heads. I will never forget the sounds of all the kids crying and some screaming as it went over the school. We were lucky, it just went over. It touched down several miles away. A couple years ago one went right over the house. When ever we have a warning, I get the cats in their carriers and we take cover in the bathroom until the threat is over. That was the first time I heard the roar that people say you hear from the tornado. Again I was lucky.

  6. Wow, Laurie. You’re making me feel like a wimp by comparison. Honestly I’ve never had that close a brush with a storm.
    Glad you made it through all of them!!!

  7. Hi Faith. Home alone through that, huh? Every parent’s nightmare that their children have to face something like that when they can’t protect them. 🙁

  8. Melanie we rarely go to the basement here. Not sure why. We just aren’t that afraid. We’ll turn the TV on and watch, but we are sort of set down in the side of a hill with hills all around us and we (probably foolishly) think that’s some protection.

  9. amyc, I remember hearing the word derecho a couple of years ago, like in Indiana and that part of the country. I’d never heard the word before and had no idea what it was, but it did massive damage. I should look up the spelling of that word. 🙂

  10. Mary, my heart goes out to the people of Pilger, NE!

    I couple of years ago, driving home from shopping, we got caught in a hail storm. Dang, that stuff is LOUD banging and bouncing off a car roof. I found a place to pull under cover before it broke windows–still say I’d have been home and in the garage if the guy in front of me would have just disappeared.

  11. Duluth, MN is a city built into the side of a really big hill that bottoms in Lake Superior, and it has roughly 40 creeks (some above and some routed below ground) running through it. Two years ago almost to the day it flooded with 9 inches of rain, and the above-ground creeks ran down the streets, taking out cars and retaining walls, and the below-ground creeks undermined roads, nearly burying cars in the massive sink holes. The street behind us looked like an earthquake hit with the jumbled pavement, and we were cut off by water to the north, east, and west. Even the zoo flooded, drowning most of the farm animals, freeing the polar bear so she could have full run of the place, and allowing the seals to escape their prison entirely and hitchhike along the road.

  12. We have tornados a lot here in Mississippi…haven’t been in a tornado but one damaged a piece of my heart. When I was growing up my sister and I spent every Friday night with a dear aunt and uncle in their little red brick house. A couple of years ago, after they had gone to their heavenly mansions, that little red brick house was destroyed by a tornado. ???? So glad they were gone on and no one was seriously injured. So it wasn’t really close to me physically but close to my heart.

  13. Amyc and Mary,
    You spelled derecho correct. It means “straight”. Essentially, straight line storm with winds of 60mph, over 250 miles for 6 hours straight. Basically and tornado on its side. I was actually going to write about the Derecho of July 8-9, 1992, that went from IA to PA, I believe. We were coming home from a 4th of July trip to Baltimore, MD, and got stopped in Hartland, WI, 30 minutes from home due to severe weather. I remember the restaurant sign saying with the wind. I was scared and 12 years old. When we got home there were trees down all over town. It took us an hour to get my grandma home, it usually takes 5 minutes! It was amazing how the community pitched in.
    We have plenty of tornadoes, they’ve been staying away, but seem to be creeping closer. I can’t wait to read these books!
    Keep up the good work and God bless, Mary.

  14. I think all of us have been through bad storms and experienced tornado warnings but the time that was most terrifying to me was when my daughter was at Girl Scout Camp and a warning was issued for that immediate area. I felt quite hopeless and even though it did touch down a few miles away, the Girl Scout Camp was spared. Many prayers of petition went up during that time and they were followed with many prayers of thanksgiving! My thoughts and prayers are with tMonday’s storm victims.

  15. Several years ago we were on our way to Wed. eve. bible study with 8 kids in the van when a tornado swept over us. We saw it coming and stopped the van and everyone got in a nearby ditch. The van turned over on top of us, but fortunately most of the kids were low in the ditch in typical tornado position, and all but one were merely held down. Our oldest daughter was sucked up into a rear wheel well, but held there safely until the van was uprighted by 2 paramedics and an 18 year old foster daughter. I had a 6 yr old held tightly and pushed up against the bank when the van tipped and the Hollywood mirror on the outside went between us and kept the weight of the van from crushing us. One child had a broken hand, I had a gash over my eye, one ear severely cut and a gash on a couple of fingers from the broken mirror, but otherwise all were safe. God certainly took care of us that night.

  16. I grew up in Eastern Colorado (I like to say Almost Kansas) and we had what was called cyclones. My Grandfather’s chicken coops ended up about a mile away and a big tree fell on the back porch during one of them. That was scary to a 6 year old child. I will never forget it. It sounded like a big train was rushing by .

  17. Tornados are such unpredictable things. So scary. And deadly. So thankful you are safe.

    We had a huge hailstorm hit us (Abilene, TX) last Thursday. Literally softball sized balls of ice pelting everything in their path. I’d heard of such things but never seen it. So much damage to cars, roofs, windows. Several injuries to people who were out at a downtown event. Thankfully no fatalities.

    I was caught in the storm, driving. Thankfully, the hail on my side of town was much smaller, only about the size of an apricot. It still sounded like the glass on my windows was going to break in. And the rain came down so hard, I literally could not see out the windshield. I had to pull over in a church parking lot and wait it out. Of course, in true Texas fashion, it disappeared as fast as it had come. Within 5 minutes the sun was breaking through the clouds, the rain a mere sprinkle.

    God’s hand in nature is awesome. In all meanings of the word.

  18. I guess I haven’t had a ‘close’ brush with death myself but when our daughter was 16 and ‘home alone’ (in Kansas, lol) a tornado went through our little town. She has never forgotten it and our guilt has not left us about leaving her there, even though she is the one that wanted to stay home. No storms were in the forecast when we left, just goes to show that you never know. These last storms in/near Laurel and Coleridge passed through where my granddaughters future grandparents-in-law live and one of the relatives received damage to their house.

    Thank you for the chance to win your books, I love your writing.

    wfnren(at)aol(dot)com

  19. One night, it was pouring the rain. Seems like we had just gotten home, but it was really dark. My dogs were outside and I was going to try them off and let them in. (I have a phobia about leaving them in the house while I am gone due to one of my dogs we had to give away when I as a kid dying in a house fire) Anyway, back to dark and rainy, I was going to let my dogs in and I noticed they wee looking t something. So, brave me went out there because NOTHING is going to hurt my babies, when what do I see? A beautiful(not) Copperhead with its head raised and ready to attack! I got my dogs away from it and was going to get my shovel or anything to kill it, Keep in mind, I have never killed a snake nor do I know how, but I was going to protect my babies! Thankfully, my husband checked on me and saw how brave I was being, I actually think he called me crazy, but he killed it for me! So, that was my experience with torrential rain in the night!I know this wasn’t a terrible experience with weather like others have had to deal with, but the rain and the dark made this more terrifying for me! Thank God for my wonderful husband! Thanks for the chance to win! I love your books!

  20. 1998 in Nebraska. Huge tornado bearing down upon us when we went into shelter. If it had hit a town instead of fields (and a few houses along the way that were wiped out), it would have been an EF5.

  21. Tornado’s can be scary and devastating. When I was growing up we grew up in Washington state, so thankfully we didn’t get that kind of weather. But one summer I was about 13 and I was babysitting two little kids across the street from me. Anyway we were watching TV and the news team came on and said that we had a severe tornado warning. I was really scared not only for me but also for the two little ones I was responsible for. We could see the clouds getting darker and becoming humid. I called my mom and asked what I should do since practically no homes had basements. She said to get into a room with now windows which would have been in the bathroom. she said sit in the bathtub with the kids, because most likely that was more rooted into the house. So we sat there until I heard on the TV that it had lifted.
    Thankfully the tornado went never came close to us but I was a very scared 13 year old babysitter.

  22. April 27, 2011 – Tons of deadly tornadoes in Alabama (and surrounding states).

    An F5 passed about a mile from my house. I was looking out the window and watched it go by. I didn’t realize how powerful it was at the time because most of the tornadoes we experience are rain-wrapped and hard to see.

  23. We lived in Andover, MN in 1983 when a tornado hit our community on July 3. At the time, we lived in a small mobile home on an acre of land, not the place to be during a tornado. We watched the radar of the storm heading straight at us on the tv. We packed up our 3 year old daughter, our small dog, couldn’t find the cats so they had to be on their own. Our old VW Bug chugged along up to the fire station where my hubby was a volunteer firefighter. The station was built out of cement block, so we’d hopefully be safe. As we drove that one mile, small trees flew across the road in front of us. The sky turned green. The air had such a feel and color to it. Very eerie. We made it to the station, hid under a metal table in the corner as the storm blew through. The metal garage doors banged and shook. Then the calls started coming in on the PA system at the station. Homes damaged, leveled, gas leaks. Hubby jumped into firefighter mode and started one of the trucks, waiting for a second man to arrive which took forever. Trees blocked roads, everything was in a tizzy. They finally rolled out only to find a good majority of our town was demolished. Just gone. Leveled. The wives showed up and we just started making sandwiches and coffee knowing it was going to be a long night. After an hour or so, I found someone to take me by the house to see if it was still there. It was, with a roof in the front yard from someone else’s house. We lived on a full acre. Tree damage, new objects in our yard, cats were found shaking like crazy. The trailer behind us was upside down. Power was gone. The miracle was, being the fourth of July holiday, the majority of people were not home. No lives were lost. Many close calls, and miracle stories, but everyone lived. It was days and days of clean up, Red Cross brought us sandwiches and water daily. Neighbors helped neighbors. Firefighters assisted where they could. After a few days, we all gathered as the men found someone’s deck sitting alone, moved it over to a yard, a band set up, the county came and sprayed for mosquitoes and the biggest party began to celebrate our survival. The news even covered it. I’ll never forget it.

  24. The day my son was born was Feburary 18th 1976 and I had just given birth to him when a tornado tore through the town of Newport TN. It wasn’t a big one but I lay in the hospital bed watching cars and trucks wobble around in the parking lot. I was terrified because I had no idea where they took my son to and no one answered my calls to find out.

  25. I live in Nebraska too, so I think we cross our fingers and hold our breath during tornado season!!! Thanks for the informative post!

  26. Tornadoes scare me to death!!! My husband’s family lives in Nebraska and he thinks it would be “fun” to be a storm-chaser. Fun?! I grew up in California and still live here, so I’ve felt my fair share of earthquakes. We were camping in Yosemite during the big quake in San Fransisco and we felt several aftershocks. The most recent one I’ve experienced was on Easter morning a few years ago. My husband, daughter, and I were relaxing on our big bed when everything started swaying- it’s totally surreal. The non-dangerous ones are a really cool way to feel just how big nature is.
    Thanks for the giveaway!!!

  27. Weather is pretty calm here in Central coast California, but I did venture to Nebraska for college. I lived in an apartment a mile from campus my junior year and after a late afternoon class, started the trek back when a blizzard hit. Complete white out. I can still feel the frigid stinging on my face. To this day, I don’t know how I managed to get to safety. The Lord’s hands, I’m certain, because I absolutely couldn’t see a thing.

    The picture of the twin tornadoes was horrifying enough ….yesterday’s paper showed what little is left of Pilger. My heart breaks.

    Thanks for the great tornado facts, Mary, and congrats on the two releases! Way to roll!!

  28. My heart aches for the people of Nebraska who are facing such devastation and disaster! I remember a tornado that touched down about 25 miles from our home when I was a little girl. We huddled in a closet tearful and fearful of what was to come. Thankfully, we were not in the tornado’s path. However, parts of the neighboring town were destroyed and lives were lost.

  29. I guess it was probable the tornados back in 1974 in KY. We were all setting in the basement when it was going down, it sounded like a train going by because we lived by a railroad track but it wasn’t a train. I was setting on an old milk can leaning up against a water pipe and lighting struck somewhere and it knocked me off the water can. I had just bragged about having the best seat in the house. I had a change of mind after that and didn’t set there anymore. I have your book Four Weddings and a Kiss but haven’t had time to read it yet.

  30. When I was in my early twenties a tornado hit our house. It lifted the roof off and set it back down crooked. It also knocked down the sheet rock off of two rooms.

  31. Those are crazy statistics with early tornadoes. I know it’s hard to remember tornadoes have always been around, just not documented before the US was populated, obviously. 🙂 But I have to admit I have a fascination with severe weather. My parents taught us not to fear it (except the healthy-get in the basement- type fear) so we love to watch bad weather come in. When my mom was little she sat on her dad’s lap on the front porch and watched a tornado go by. Scary! Our farm has been damaged by straight line winds (they refused to call it a tornado) before – heavy machinery and wagons picked up and moved/damaged with grass all around it flattened in circular direction. Sounds like tornado to me!! Many close calls in the past couple years, but I still love to watch storms out the window. The power of God amazes me. I always pray for the safety of those in the path.

  32. I live in California, the earthquakes are very scary. When they happen all you can do is pray that it will stop.

  33. Just after moving to Virginia about 7 years ago a small tornado passed over our house and then touched down in a valley beyond iOS. Thankfully it was very small and only a few trees were downed by it. It sounded like a train went over our house!!

  34. Hoosier born & bred, but I not had a close brush with a tornado [knock on wood]. However, during the 1974 outbreak in the midwest, I was in a university building and would have taken cover… but we didn’t know that there was bad weather. I had family members in northern Indiana, Ohio and Kentucky who were all safe during this storm.

  35. My sister told me about the twin tornadoes… the closet I ever was near something like that was when I was 11… my family was on a cruise and we were in the middle of a hurricane… tons of people got sick from the rough seas, but my father and I were alright.
    Nowadays I see dust devils and walls of dirt miles wide that blow in… they have caused some nasty accidents.

  36. Yikes, those tornadoes are so devastating. I am glad that you are ok. I went through the edge of hurricane once. I was so scared until I learned that it was a hurricane and THEN I was terrified and so grateful for God’s protection in sending not one but four big rigs to surround me and escort my little Ford Pinto to safety.

  37. I live in Alabama and we have tornadoes, severe thunderstorms, and flooding to deal with most of the year.

  38. Mary,

    I lived in Tennessee and we had tornadoes too. They are so scary. I hope everybody is okay and my prayers are to all of them. Here in AZ, on the Navajo Reservation, there is a huge fire and my prayers go to them also.

    I love your books, always have…Hope to win…

    Guardian of the Dream Catcher,
    Melinda

  39. I grew up near Columbus, NE, about 40 miles from Pilger. My son and brother who live near there had damage to grain bins and my son’s house had damage. Thankfully all people and animals were unhurt. My son who grew up in CA says he would rather be in an earthquake!

  40. Since I live in Kansas, I’ve spent time in shelters praying hard during tornado warnings that the tornado would pass us by. Probably the scariest was in 1990 when I was about 8 months pregnant. My husband left me in the small, unfinished basement of our home with our dog (I think he left me his army helmet too). Since he was in the National Guard, he left to go to a neighboring town that had already been hit by a tornado (Hesston, Kansas). Fortunately, the tornado did not hit our town. I’m thankful I’ve never experienced the devastation of a tornado, and hope I never will.

  41. We get tornadoes in our area, West Texas, too. The one I remember most was when I was in 1st grade. I was walking home from school with a friend. We got to my house first then she had another block to walk. She fell in the street and when my mother went out to help her, she saw a tornado on the edge of town. She couldn’t see it from the house because of the trees. It didn’t hit town, but it lifted right before it hit the new 3 million dollar (a huge amount of money in the early 60s) high school.

  42. In October about 3 or 4 years ago, we were in California visiting our kids and grandkids when a neighbor called to tell us a big hailstorm had hit Glendale, AZ where we live, and all the south-facing windows in our house were broken through. We had to cut our vacation short and leave for home right away to deal with the mess – water damage inside, all new windows, new roof, hail damage on vehicles, etc.. Our nice neighbors had covered the windows with plastic and swept up glass. It was a mess, but no one was hurt, thank the Lord. 🙂 Kind of funny – an ice storm in Glendale, Arizona.

  43. I live in NE Nebraska…..close to bad weather has been rather constant the last couple of weeks….but I love the people of Nebraska so I guess I will stay!

  44. I live in North Dakota. December 23 of this last year we (My Dad, Mom, little brother and me) were making the 40 mile drive home after getting whatever last minute shopping needed to be done. The town I’m from is around a hundred people and no grocery store. It was late as it so often seems to be, and snowing. Before long you couldn’t really see the road, just the white line on the side keeping us from going in the ditch. Pretty soon even that was disappearing in the snow. But as that was happening my dad who was driving saw the mile marker, and knew it was where the turn for a school was. He was able to back up a little bit get turned, and before long we were in the school’s parking lot breathing a sigh of relief. Now in the protection of the school building we felt much safer. We had a full tank of gas so we were able to get a little bit of sleep until the storm passed, and we could make the rest of the drive home. Definitely a Christmas Eve morning we’ll never forget.

  45. Several years ago when Hurricane Hugo hit the coast of NC I was visiting my parents farm near Charlotte. Instead of dying out as hurricanes usually do, Hugo went up the central of the state developing tornados as it went. We were huddled in the central hallway when we heard the ‘train sound.’ Shortly thereafter a huge oak tree fell across the dive way, just missing the house. Several other trees came down, but we were fortunate. Nobody was hurt.

  46. I live in SE Nebraska & had terrible winds a couple weeks ago, lots of trees down. When I was 16 my father was Sheriff & I went with him weather spotting & saw a tornado touch down 1/2 mile from us. No one was hurt but much damage.

  47. I in 7 th grade. We had to go in the hallway for a tornado. I remember looking outside and seeing the trees bending. I was one of the ones near the end and near the glass and doors. Thankfully, we got wind damage at our school, but that was closer enough for me. Seeing trees bend and almost touch the ground. Then riding home that day and seeing trees snapped, it was an eerie feeling. I never take the warnings lightly.

  48. I have had several brushes with weather. My first one was Hurricane Carla back in the early ’60’s. I have since been through at least 4 more hurricanes that have produced huge windstorms and rainstorms.In Ike a tree hit my house. Luckily it didn’t do much damage. I was in either big straight line winds or a tornado in ’86. The wind and rain was blowing and I thought I heard a train go through. I went out on the porch and took down my plants so they wouldn’t be blown away. There were tree limbs down all down the street the next morning. I’ve been through a couple of tropical storms and some tornados close to me. In my first hurricane a tree laid down right beside my house.Several other trees were uprooted. My dad walked outside and I was frightened he would be blown away. I was about 4 at the time. I also saw my swing set blown over. I’ve dealt with downed trees and no electricity.That’s what it’s like to live in Texas close to the coast near Houston. One Hurricane went to land in the upper part of the coast and it hit Lufkin where I was working as a Deputy Sheriff and was out in it trying to make sure people were okay and monitoring the storm. Tree limb came down in front of the patrol car.

  49. We were living in the Philippines as missionaries in a very isolated, remote location in a glorified “tribal” home with a nipa (grass roof). A storm came through packing strong winds and heavy, pelting rain. Our grass roof kept flying back (it is stacked in how it is put on) and the rain came in and the wind too. We didn’t have a weather radio, tv, or weather channels out in that place as we were living in the third world. So we had no inkling of the storm a brewing. We had our two little children with us (a four year old and two year old). I remember my husband and I trying to stay calm and and not panic as we “weathered” that event with two little ones. Our roof stayed on but needed to be repaired and we had wet beds and a house but we were fine….good ending! Our kids weren’t traumatized so that was the happiest of endings too.

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