Family thankful to be alive after Harrison Co., IN tornado

Published: Jul. 21, 2018 at 11:00 PM EDT|Updated: Jul. 22, 2018 at 1:04 PM EDT
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HARRISON CO, IN (WAVE) – The National Weather Service confirmed Saturday that an EF-1 tornado touched down in Harrison County Friday near New Middletown.

Officials said winds got up to 105 miles per hour.

The day after, a flipped trailer and devastated barns were still laying in ruin, but the skies were peaceful.

"I was scared to death," Judi Eugley, who was caught in the direct path of the tornado, said. "All the debris was around, swirling around. We sunk down in the cellar and rode it out."

Just moments before, twisted metal and winds at 105 miles per hour hit near Sara Beth Way and Simler Road southwest of New Middletown, the strongest wind measured by the NWS.

National Weather Service confirms EF-1 tornado in Harrison County, IN
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Danny Perry, who lives only several houses away, was driving home making sure his family was okay.

"A tornado is going straight toward your house," Perry said, discussing a call from his neighbor. "We can see it dude. Like five minutes' worth."

It was confirmed Saturday-- A storm with an EF-1 tornado, traveling for three or four miles at 300 yards wide.

"Most of the time, it was actually multiple tornadoes around the main storm," NWS Meteorologist John Gordon said.

Gordon and his team surveyed the damage Saturday south of Corydon and he said there's no question about it.

"Right across the street are these amazing corn circles," Gordon said. "You can see the corn go in every direction. You can see mud spattering back on the back side of the house and trees going in multiple directions. Clear cut tornado."

A storm that took out Perry's barn, left his horses okay, but ripped up his roof and destroyed his fruit trees.

"Finally, I got home and it just breaks my heart," Perry said. "Just got to start over."

Perry said it'll take him days to clean up, as neighbors stop by to d rop off food and swap stories.

Despite the moments of terror and the days of hard work ahead, there is relief.

"We're alive," Perry said. "It could be worse. It could always be worse. Everything happens for a reason, just don't know why. We'll figure it out one day."

Members of the New Middletown Fire Department provided lunch to storm victims.

One said that a fellow firefighter, who had been injured while responding to the storms the day before, was now at home and doing okay.

The Red Cross was also providing assistance in Harrison County.

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