One Year Later Anniversary of Deadly Tornado Outbreak

By: Stephen Bowers Email
By: Stephen Bowers Email

Friday marks the somber one year anniversary of one of the largest tornado outbreaks in U.S. history. East Mississippi and west Alabama were right in the middle of it.

Newscenter 11 tracked several violent tornadoes across the area, including an EF5 tornado that hit Neshoba and Kemper counties and an EF4 tornado that hit Jasper and Clarke counties before moving into Choctaw County, Ala.

A year later many are still picking up the pieces, including Harry Chandler and his family in Stonewall. His daughter filmed the approach of the EF4 tornado that hit Jasper and Clarke counties, packing 190 mph winds.

"It was really a bad, stormy day," said Chandler. "Me and my wife and my daughter were out watching the clouds to see what was transpiring. And we had been listening to you reporting it all the way. In fact, the storm that came through here was the one that formed over Mize or Magee and we watched it track all the way across the state."

"We were always weather conscious, but now it's even more so," said Clarke County Sheriff Todd Kemp. "I'm in the process now of trying to get everything back to a normal state. We knew that it could happen. We just didn't know that it was going to happen to us last year."

Kemp says he has noticed an increased weather awareness. He also pointed out a need for change in Clarke County.

"We need some type of early warning system," Kemp said. "Whether it be aerial siren, whether it be radio communication, I don't know what it needs to be. But we need an early warning communication system."

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