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Damage Left Behind in Ogden, IL
photos and captions by Norene McGhiey

At 9:02 p.m. on Friday April 19, 1996, the tiny town of Ogden and its 800 residents had their lives changed forever. A tornado with winds estimated around 160 m.p.h. roared through the tiny community toppling cars, uprooting trees and destroying homes. When it was over, more than 200 homes received major damage, 80 homes were completely destroyed and 13 people suffered minor injuries. This section provides an eye-witness view of Ogden, Illinois, after the storm.

[Image: tree collapsed on home (84K)]
Image by: McGhiey

One-hundred year old house on Main Street located next to the Library. In fact, it was occupied by the librarian. Difficult to tell how beautiful the tree was, but one thing's for sure, the owner's cat was missing after the storm.

[Image: destroyed home (63K)]
Image by: McGhiey

Home of Roger and Angela Bensyl and 15-month son at Main Street and Route 49. The family was unaware of the approaching storm and had barely gotten to the crawl space when the tornado struck. The Ogden Christian Church is in the background.

[Image: missing conditioner (69K)]
Image by: McGhiey

Home of Brian and Lora Holden on Main Street. The air conditioner was "sucked" into the house and hit the wall on the far side of the staircase. Residents were in an inner room and felt the house vibrating. The men (in the picture) are repairing a flat section of the roof which was lifted but not torn off.

The house sustained cracked walls and damage around inner door frames and around the chimney. (The insurance adjustor thought the house may have been picked up and set back down on the foundation.) Trees were uprooted in the back yard and the neighbor's garage (to the east) collapsed across their chain link fence. Bird feeder in front of the house was undisturbed.

From the Chase
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Credits and Acknowledgments for WW2010.
Department of Atmospheric Sciences (DAS) at
the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.