Pryor, OK Tornado Destruction, Apr 1942 - Pryor Starts Digging Out
The storm also was reported to have taken one life at Tiawah, about 15 miles southwest of Pryor, and to have killed three east of Talala.
MRS. ELIZABETH ROGERS, club woman, had stopped in at a store on her way home from a Red Cross course.
"The store was wrecked, and I was hit on the head with something," she said, "but as soon as I could I got a bunch of Boy Scouts and come over here and went to work." She is running an emergency station at the First Christian church.
County Judge Killed.
County Judge W. E. NICKLIN, veteran Mayes county public official, was among those killed in the storm. Walking home from the courthouse a friend called him into her home as the storm approached. The house was destroyed and both perished.
The Baptist church, the largest in town, was cut in two and gutted by the tornado.
Information was lacking on the number of dead and injured at farms between here and Claremore. This morning eight airplanes circled over a 40-mile area between here and Tulale, directing ground crews to damaged isolated farm houses that had been in the tornado's path.
Sedatives and opiates were at a premium in the first rush of injured into the receiving stations. Many injured endured their torment in silence, quickly lapsing into unconsciousness.
Baggage trucks from the depot were used, along with doors, to handle the wounded. The trucks were used as ambulances for short distances.
DAISY ABBOTT, a laundry worker, was buried under rubble as the laundry was blown in. Other employes dug her out.
She said she felt fine and got up and walked around.
She collapsed suddenly and died a short time later. Physicians said she apparently suffered internal injuries and was unaware of them.
ORPHANAGE IS TRAGIC SCENE.
Sorrow, Pain Prevail In Emergency Aid Station.
Pryor, April 28 -- (AP) --The scene is a dormitory at the Whitaker Orphanage that has been converted into an emergency receiving station.
By the light of huge outside floodlights shining through the windows a surgeon performs a brain operation on one of the victims of this war boom town's disastrous tornado ... nurses stand by to help.
Relatives of the injured man, and just plain curious, troop in and out of the room.
In one corner, a middle aged man sat Indian fashion beside a cot on which his wife lay.
"Doctor, come here, feel her pulse," he called.
The doctor left his operation and went to the woman.
"Sorry," he told the man softly, "she's gone."
The husband nodded and stood up to leave. His right leg collapsed. Physicians said it had been broken at least five hours before.
Upstairs a woman screamed in pain as nurses attempted to lower to lower her onto a cot. A 3-year-old girl roused from a coma, cried in fright:
"Daddy, daddy. I want daddy."
Nurses said the father was dead, the mother seriously injured.
Outside the boys and girls of the orphanage soberly directed traffic of ambulances and trucks which mashed the well tended lawns and flower beds into quagmires.
The Ada Evening News Oklahoma 1942-04-28