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Taking cover!

We often hear about tornadoes in the USA and the destruction they can cause. Although we experience tornadoes in this part of the world, they tend to pale into insignificance when compared with what can occur in the States. 

Here is the account of a twister that hit an 8 year old boy’s hometown of Xenia in 1974.

Xenia, Ohio – Tornado – April 3, 1974
Rick Hoag’s Story

On that fateful day, I was a young boy of 8 years old. We lived in the Arrowhead Subdivision. That afternoon I was around the corner playing with some neighbor kids. I thought I could hear my father calling me, so I ran back to the house. Thinking back now, there is no way I would have been able to hear him. I was too far away for a voice to have traveled in the afternoon noise. Besides, Dad had a very bad case of toncilitis that day. Like I was saying, I went back home and got through the door just in time to answer the ringing phone. On the other end [of the phone] was my Mother. Mom was working. She told me she heard a bad storm was on the way. She told me to make sure the garage door was shut and to stay inside. After I hung up the phone, I settled down to watch tv.

To this day I can vividly remember the electricity going out. I looked out the large window in the living room and didn’t have a clue as to what I was looking at.

Dad was asleep on the couch, so I woke him up to look. Dad looked and said to get into the bathroom. We sat on the floor. Dad had his back to the door and his feet pushing against the wall opposite the door. I remember that as soon as we sat down, the windows broke. Glass blew under the door, and the sound was tremendous. I know it really didnt take too long for the tornado to go past, but I do remember the conversation we had in the process. I could feel the cool air rushing under the floor through the crawlspace vents. I asked if we were flying. He said he wasn’t sure, but he didn’t think we were. He said the house was tearing apart. I asked him how he knew. He said he just knew it was.

When things calmed down, we opened the door. The odd feeling I had, looking up the street from inside what once was my hallway, is still with me today.

I think back often to that day. I think back and wonder what would have happened if my Dad hadn’t been sick that day. Like alot of kids, I stayed home by myself after school back then. I seriously doubt I would be able to tell you my story, if I had been alone that day.

I still live in Xenia and have only had the one first hand experience up until this day.


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