Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Tornado in Central Texas Town Kills at Least 30; Scores Hurt

Newspaper article St Louis Post-Dispatch (MO)

Tornado in Central Texas Town Kills at Least 30; Scores Hurt

Article excerpt

Tornadoes ripped through central Texas on Tuesday, destroying a subdivision in the town of Jarrell, and killing at least 30 people. Scores were hurt.

Between 50 and 70 homes in the Double Creeks Estate subdivision were leveled by one of several twisters to hit four counties about 4 p.m.

"It's not there anymore," sheriff's deputy R.B. Raby said of the subdivision. "I don't know of anything anyone can do. It's just a flat, vacant field." Thirty people were confirmed dead at a temporary morgue set up at a school, and emergency workers planned to search for survivors throughout the night, said sheriff's deputy Ed Richards. "I don't know what we may still find," Richards said. "This is a devastating scene." Bits of clothing hung from barbed-wire fences, telephone poles were snapped in half and a tractor-trailer lay on its back in the middle of a field. Hearses trickled in to pick up bodies. Stunned residents covered in mud wandered around in the rain, crying and consoling each other. "I seen the tornado on TV, and I called my wife and daughters and told them to get in their cars and run," said Al Clawson, the owner of a garbage recycling plant, which was wrecked. At least two of the plant's trucks lay on their sides after being tossed into the air. Max Johnson, pastor of the Jarrell Baptist Church, worked to comfort frightened children. "It's hard to know what to say, because right now no one knows who's missing and who's dead. In a town this small, there's probably not one person who did not know someone killed in this tragedy." Motorists marooned under an overpass on Interstate 35 told a local radio station that they saw the tornado split into three funnel clouds before it struck the town. "It covered the entire sky to the north and so unded like the loudest thing you ever thought you'd hear," one caller said. …

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