Crystal Lake, IL Tornadoes, Apr 1965


Crystal Lake, Ill., April 12 (AP) -- The cleanup began today after a vicious series of tornadoes and wind storms lashed northern Illinois, causing seven deaths and almost $6 million damage Sunday.
Hardest hit was this community of 8,000 about 45 miles northwest of Chicago.
A twister cut through the city in the afternoon, and within minutes five residents were dead. A sixth victim, a 5-year-old boy, died in Island Lake, about six miles east.
The McHenry County sheriff's office estimated $4 million damage in Crystal Lake and Island Lake. Homes were flattened and business places destroyed by the violent winds, which shattered what had begun as the first pleasant Sunday of spring.
The tornado was one of several that lashed the northeastern corner of the state. Even in those areas where no funnel clouds were sighted, high winds raged.
In Chicago, debris was blown from several buildings under construction, and ANTHONY JACKSON, 8, was killed when he was struck by a plywood panel ripped from the 20th story of a construction project.
Three of the dead in Crystal were members of one family, RICHARD HOLTER, his wife, ROSALIE, both about 44, and their son, JOHN, 20.
Two business executives also died. They were RAE GOSS, 51, vice president of the Inland Lithographing Co., in Chicago, and LOUIS KNAACK, SR., 52, assistant treasurer of the Oak Manufacturing Corp. of Crystal Lake. KNAACK was also president of the Crystal Lake park board.
The latest victim reported was CHARLES POKORNY, 5, of Island Lake.
GOSS was trapped when the tornado ripped the roof from a barn behind his home.
Hardest hit after McHenry County was Lake County. Damage there was estimated at $2.3 million by Sheriff CHARLES LARSON'S office.
Much of the damage was at Waukegan Memorial Airport, where several hangars were flattened and planes housed in them were destroyed.
Other spots where tornado damage occurred were Rockford, Rockton, Geneva and St. Charles, roofs were torn from several homes. Damage in the other areas was mostly to farm homes and outbuildings.

Southern Illinoisan Carbondale Illinois 1965-04-12