Super Tuesday Tornado Outbreak Hits Five Year Anniversary
By Adam Ghassemi
CASTALIAN SPRINGS, Tenn. – Irvin Stone still comes to the Castalian Springs Post Office that's now a trailer. Like so many people in this small community, he'll never forget February 5th, 2008.
"It was just devastating. Just like a war zone. It just really tore everything up," Stone said.
A strong line of storms moved through the area creating tornadoes that touched down after 10 p.m.
Emergency Management Director Ken Weidner can remember the seven deaths it left behind in Sumner County alone as it blocked roads keeping emergency workers from storm victims, and tearing apart pieces of history.
"I think the biggest problem we had is it came in late in the evening," Weidner said Tuesday. "It was only in Sumner County for 5.6 miles, but the devastation it left was great."
One story most people recall is when crews in the middle of the night made a big discovery. In the darkness they found 11-month-old Kyson Stowell-Nobel blown into a field, far from debris and the storm path that took his mother's life.
"I heard a baby crying and I heard oh my Lord here's a baby," said a rescuer at the time. "That child has got an angel on his shoulder. Somebody is watching over him."
Tuesday by phone Kyson's grandmother said the child is doing well, living with his father and is now in kindergarten.
Today, the destruction is gone, but officials hope the lessons it brought aren't fading as well.
"Several people that I talked to, a weather radio woke them up, but they didn't do anything. They didn't take any precautions. So that concerns me a bit," Weidner said referring to last week's tornado outbreak.
That leaves people here hoping Mother Nature doesn't give them another harsh reminder.
"I hope it don't happen again, but I'm sure if it does we'll all stick together and do something you know. Come through it one way or the other," Stone went on to say.
Weidner says the lead-time before a tornado strike is now in the neighborhood of 14-15 minutes versus 1-3 minutes like in the past. He says that's thanks to weather radios and alert systems like new government texts, apps or WeatherCall.
Wednesday, June 19 2013 2:24 PM EDT2013-06-19 18:24:42 GMT
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