Tags: tornado | illinois | kills | woman

Tornado in Illinois Kills Woman; Storm Chews Up 50-Mile Path

By    |   Friday, 10 Apr 2015 12:38 PM

Tornadoes swept through Illinois on Thursday evening and a 67-year-old woman was killed as one twister leveled the tiny town of Fairdale, just south of Rockford.

DeKalb County officials told the Chicago Tribune that the Fairdale tornado's strength had not been determined as of Friday. The newspaper said the twister was part of a storm that caused damage along a 50-mile long path through north central Illinois.

"Fairdale is pretty well destroyed from what I understand," said Les Bellah, village president of Kirkland where American Red Cross volunteers were set up to help storm victims.

DeKalb County Coroner Dennis Miller confirmed the death of Geraldine M. Schultz, 67, who was found in her damaged home after the storm, according to the Rockford Register Star, which noted that Ferndale didn't have severe weather warning sirens to alert residents of a tornado.

The Register Star reported that Illinois Gov. Bruce Rauner was expected to survey weather damage in Rochelle on Friday. The newspaper said Fairdale, Kirkland, Belvidere, Ashton and Monroe Center were the hardest hit areas.

Commonwealth Edison was working Friday morning to return electricity to about 58,000 customers affected by the storm.

Grubsteakers, a restaurant in Rochelle, was heavily damaged by a tornado, according to WLS-TV. Raymond Kramer, 81, said his wife suggested taking shelter there as the storm got closer.

"I stood at the door taking pictures of the tornado coming at me, and finally the owner of the restaurant said, 'Everybody in the basement right now,'" said Kramer. "And no sooner did we get down there when it hit the building and laid a whole metal wall on top of the doors where we went into the storm cellar."

Twelve people, including Kramer and his wife, were trapped in the restaurant's cellar for about 90 minutes before help arrived, reported WLS-TV.

"When the tornado hit, we all got a dust bath," said Kramer. "Everyone in there got shattered with dust and debris falling out of the rafters."

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Tornadoes swept through Illinois on Thursday evening and a 67-year-old woman was killed as one twister leveled the tiny town of Fairdale, just south of Rockford.
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Friday, 10 Apr 2015 12:38 PM
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