Kokomo, IN Flash Tornado, Jun 1942

KOKOMO tornado 1942


Kokomo, Ind., June 22 - (UP) - Citizens of Kokomo, aided by Red Cross disaster workers, today began the task of cleaning debris caused when a "flash" tornado ripped through the south section of the city Saturday night, demolishing homes and fatally injuring four persons.
Many of the 125-families made homeless by the twister were temporarily quartered in a partially-completed federal housing project which survived the storm except for a few shattered window panes. Others were cared for at the National Guard armory where the Red Cross established an emergency hospital.
In addition to the four dead, eight persons were in a serious condition at St. Joseph's Hospital and scores of others suffered lacerations and bruises.
The victims were, PERRY MORRIS, 48, and his wife, VIOLET, 38; EDWARD LAZENBY, 17, and FRED LONG, 38.

Man Dies of Fright.
MR. and MRS. MORRIS were killed instantly when the impact of the twister struck their small home in the south eastern section of the city. LAZENBY was injured when the tornado engulfed a barn in which he had taken refuge, and LONG died from a heart attack which physicians said was induced by fright.
Four small children of the MORRIS family were patients at the Kokomo Hospital where physicians said their conditions were serious. One child, KATHLEEN, age eight, had both legs broken and the other children, ranging in age from 11 to two, suffered internal injuries.
Also seriously injured were MRS. GRACE SWISHER, of near Kokomo, an expectant mother, and her three-year-old daughter, MERLE FAY SWISHER; MISS DONABELLA GRANT, 20, a Kokomo hotel employee, and FRED O'VODKA, 16.

Misses War Industries.
The tornado, causing damage which Kokomo city officials feared would exceed $500,000, cut a two-block wide path through the south part of the city, demolishing homes in one of the city's newest and finest residential districts but missing several vital war industries.
State police, Indiana guardsmen and legionnaires patrolled the area yesterday and today, preventing throngs of curious from penetrating the devastated area. Roads leading into Kokomo were crowded by thousands of automobiles of persons who drove from all sections of the state to view the wreckage.
Governor Schricker, Adjutant General Elmer F. Staub and Don Stiver, public safety director, were among state officials who inspected the section Sunday.
The tornado was Kokomo's first in 50 years.

Freeport Journal-Standard Illinois 1942-06-22