Wednesday's storms spawned at least 16 tornados reported Wednesday from Nebraska and Kansas across southern Missouri to Illinois and Kentucky. The dead included one killed in the Missouri town of Buffalo and two dead in the state's Cassville and Puxico areas. A Harveyville, Kan., man suffered fatal injuries after his home collapsed on him, and three more people were killed in eastern Tennessee.
In Tennessee, donated storage units were to be offered to families whose homes were damaged so they could protect possessions before the next round of storms.
The brother-in-law of a woman who was killed said he found her under some debris and held her hand until paramedics arrived.
George Jones and several relatives gathered Thursday at the shattered mobile home where Melissa Evans Beaty lived outside the small city of Crossville, about 110 miles east of Nashville. He said Beaty was alive and asking about her grandchildren after the twister passed. The children were all right, but Beaty later died, and her husband, Ricky, was taken to a Knoxville hospital with a fractured pelvis and severe head trauma, Jones said.
"We would give anything to have Lisa back," he added.
The couple's home was destroyed, with pieces wrapped around nearby trees.
Bunny Howe survived with her 9-year-old grandsons by climbing into a bathtub as she watched the wind pick up one of her horses in the backyard, then overturn part of a tractor-trailer in the front yard. That's when she got on top of the children and held the bathroom door shut with her feet.
"Ma, what are we going to do?'" she recalled the children asking her.
"We're going to pray," she told them.
The tornado tore off a wall of the Howes' garage and knocked a tree onto the roof.
After all that, Howe said, she's not overly concerned about storms predicted for Friday.
"What's it going to do?" she said. "Take the rest of the house down?"
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