Tornado Sighted in Louisa County

By: Philip Stewart
By: Philip Stewart
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May 11, 2006

Thursday was an evening of severe weather for parts of the viewing area. Most of the major damage was concentrated east of town.

There was significant damage in Louisa County late in the afternoon and some residents said they saw a tornado.

"We heard it raining and thundering and saw the lightning," said Rachel Deborde, a resident on Mallory Road in Ferncliff. "Next thing we know the air conditioner starts shaking in our window, the house starts shaking and my mother in law hollered for us to get downstairs."

She said it was around 4:30 Thursday afternoon when a number of strong storms moved through the area.

"Right over in the middle of this field," explained Edward Mayo, another resident in the area. "It looked like the clouds were touching the ground."

Just across the road, neighbors were watching storm warnings on television. Then they looked outside.

"I saw that tree coming by the back window and I told (my wife), lets go to the basement," said Donald Donovan. "She said I'm gonna go get the dogs. I said no. Get to the basement. Let's go. Now!"

"I looked out and there were things flying...through the air, like patio furniture and trees," Susie Donovan.

They said they both headed to the basement.

"We just stayed a little while and came back up. A few seconds and it was over with," said Mr. Donovan.

But it was long enough to create quite a mess. Patio furniture was smashed, lawn ornaments were broken, and trees were blown down all over the neighborhood.

Back across the street, Deborde's shed was gone from her yard.

"It went completely through the field, over to the house across the field, there's pieces of it over there," said Deborde.

But among all of this mess there was only minor damage to one home, and no one was hurt.

"That's the main thing, that we still have our own selves," said Mrs. Donovan. "We can always replace material things."

The National Weather Service will release more information Friday confirming whether or not the rough weather in Ferncliff was part of a tornado.

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