Local Pictures
Classified Ads
 Announce Births
Email Us
Buy A Copy
Local Links

click here to
The Daily



09-29-03: Tornado strikes area


Nine farm buildings including one large barn were destroyed when a tornado swept through rural New Weston on Friday night.
The only injuries reported were cuts to the feet of a farmer and his wife as they stepped through glass carrying their children to the safety of their basement.
The National Weather Service said the F1 tornado hit about 11 p.m. and carried 73 to 112 mph winds. The tornado was on the ground for approximately 3/4 of a mile along a stretch of Ohio 705, tearing down power lines in its path just southwest of Burkettsville, according to meteorologist Myron Padgett.
One cow died as the result of flying debris at the Laverne “Pat” Siefring farm at 3700 Ohio 705, where a total of seven buildings sustained heavy damage when the tornado struck about 11 p.m.
“My husband and I were sleeping when we woke up from the sound of a freight train,” said Pat Siefring’s wife, Jeanette. “My husband said, ‘It sounds like a tornado,’ and then the lights went out.”
Jeanette Siefring said by the time she and her husband made their way to the kitchen, it was quiet. The tornado had passed, she said.
“If it had hit the house, we’d been gone,” she said.
The Siefrings said one of their home’s gables was torn off along with some siding. A window was broken in the basement, but most of the house escaped damage.
The rest of their buildings weren’t so fortunate. A large barn was destroyed and six others sustained heavy damage. Three grain silos are now leaning from the force of the high winds and several grain bins were left with holes.
The back wall of one barn was completely tore off and cows wandered aimlessly around the property before finding their way back — with the help of some neighbors and friends — to a fenced-in area. They have since been sent to market, Jeanette Siefring said.
Across the road, Ronald and Lynn Broering found two barns destroyed and minor home damage after the storm subsided.
“Thirty minutes before it hit, my daughter walked through the garage and into the house. She had just gotten home from her first (St. Henry) football game,” said Lynn Broering.
Broering said she just got to sleep when the wind tore a hole in the garage roof and shattered the kitchen window. She and her husband gathered their two sets of twins, ages 3 and 5, in their arms, and headed for their basement as their daughters, ages 10 and 7, followed.
“We couldn’t see the glass from the window, and walked straight through it to the basement,” Lynn Broering said. “Our feet got all cut up.”
Two of the family’s hay wagons were damaged, as well as a truck stored in one of the destroyed barns, Lynn Broering said.
“All that was left standing from our new tool shed was a 3- to 4-foot high cement wall,” she added.
Darke County EMA Director June Thompson was on the scene shortly after the tornado struck and saw the devastation. She said she’s seen high winds wildly pick up projectiles before, but this was different.
“One picture that sticks in my head is the 2-by-4 piece of wood jammed into the cement silo,” Thompson said.
Thompson said one of Siefring’s silos, completely full of grain, was moved off its foundation. It was obvious to her from the looks of the damage that a tornado had touched down.
“You could tell there was much more than straight line winds.” Thompson said. “Debris doesn’t get left on top of barn roofs like it did unless there’s a twist in the wind direction,” she added.


Phone: (419)586-2371,   Fax: (419)586-6271
All content copyright 2003
The Standard Printing Company
P.O. Box 140, Celina, OH 45822