Tornadoes struck Arkansas and Missouri with deadly force on New Year’s Eve, leaving seven dead and dozens more injured. Six of the dead were killed on Friday, while the seventh died of her injuries on Saturday.
The seventh victim was with a friend when her trailer was hit by a twister. Bruce Southard, the chief of the Rolla Rural Fire Department explained that there was nothing left of the trailer except for its frame. Debris was scattered as far away as 40-50 yards from the trailer’s location. Southard said “It’s like you set a bomb off in it. It just annihilated it.”
At a farmstead not far from the trailer Loretta Anderson, 64-year-old grandmother was sitting with her granddaughter Megan Ross, 21, when the tornado struck. Mrs. Andersen was killed in the onslaught.
In addition to the deaths and injuries power was curtailed to about 20,000 customers, with 10,000 still without power by Saturday afternoon. According to the Governor of Missouri, Jay Nixon, who was touring the areas damaged by the tornadoes, there was damage also not far from St. Louis.