Woodward, OK Devastating Tornado Rips Towns, Apr 1947
PANHANDLE TORNADO DEATH TOLL 152.
WOODWARD HARDEST HIT WITH ESTIMATED 85 DEAD, TEXAS TOWNS SUFFER MANY FATALITIES.
MORE THAN 1,000 INJURED, PROPERTY DAMAGE INTO MILLIONS OVER WHEAT-CATTLE COUNTRY; FEAR MORE BODIES YET IN STORM DEBRIS; INJURED BEING TAKEN AS FAR AS WICHITA AND OKLAHOMA CITY.
Woodward, Okla., April 10, (AP) -- A devastating tornado swept across a 100-mile path of a rich wheat and cattle country today killing an estimated 152 persons, injuring more than 1,000 and inflicting property damage running into millions.
The Texas state highway patrol quoting a Red Cross estimate, reported at least 152 were believed dead with the probability more bodies were buried in the rubble.
Hardest hit was Woodward, where 100 were estimated to be dead, with between 800 and 1,000 injured. Approximately 100 blocks of buildings were destroyed in this city of 5,500 population.
Other estimates includes Shattuck, Okla., 20 dead; Higgins, Tex., 24, and Glazier, Tex., 8. Earlier, two were reported dead at Gage, Okla., which would bring the total to 154.
The general course of the storm was northeastward from White Deer, Tex., 50 miles from Amarillo, then through Glazier, population 200, Higgins, population 750, Woodward, and Gage, a community of 800 persons.
Many of the injured were being taken to nearby towns, and hospitals as far away as Wichita, Kan., were preparing beds for possible patients.
Disaster crews were rushed to the stricken areas, and peace officers and hastily formed vigilante crews guarded against looting after early reports of vandalism.
Fires which followed the tornado were brought under control early today. Firemen were aided by torrential rains accompanying the southwest's most disastrous storm of the year.