Tornado rips roof off skating party - 13 WTHR Indianapolis

Tornado rips roof off skating party

Mary Milz/Eyewitness News

Kokomo, April 21 - The morning after a tornado roared through Kokomo, heavy equipment moved in to help with cleanup.

The tornado swept across a six-block area uprooting trees, toppling flagpoles and ripping off rooftops, most notably at the Kokomo skating arena, where several people stopped to see the damage firsthand.

William Wood thinks, "It's pretty bad, amazing what a tornado can do with such a big building."

The 30 or so children inside when the tornado struck escaped injury thanks to employees who directed them to take cover.

Rink employee Bob Caine recalls,"It was like the roof picked up and fell in and it stopped before it got to us."

Rick Bales took video of the twister. "It's one thing I always wanted to see in person, but not this close."

The tornado didn't actually destroy any homes, but it left several heavily damaged, taking a while to fix.

"I couldn't hardly believe it." George Grandstaff returned home to find his yard covered in debris. "From what I could tell, the roof was gone. The neighbors, I'm thankful for them, they put the tarp up while I was at work."

Perhaps most amazing is word of just one minor injury. Residents know it could have been far worse.

The storms injured up to eight people across central Indiana.

In addition to the Kokomo woman injured by debris, authorities say three to six people were hurt in Jamestown. And one person was injured when a tractor-trailer was blown off Interstate 74 in southern Boone County. No word on the condition of that person.

The storm reportedly blew as many as four semi-trailers off the highway.

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