Effingham Daily News, Effingham, IL

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April 17, 2006

Tornado hits area

Kody Rueter, 18, of Effingham took his uncle Wayne Nosbisch on an adventure Sunday evening.

The two were parked off the Teutopolis-Elliottstown Road when Rueter saw a tornado in Elliottstown. Rueter, a weather spotter, was excited to see his first daytime tornado.

Rueter and Nosbisch watched the twister travel from Elliottstown in a northeasterly direction until it was between Dieterich and Teutopolis as it kicked up debris in its path, including birds and leaves.

Carmen Rauch of Windsor said daughter Amy, son Mesa and Amy’s friend Kendra King were on their way back from visiting Amy and Mesa’s father in Kentucky when one of the kids saw the tornado.

“They pulled into Bill and Beverly Tarr’s driveway right off Route 33,” said Rauch, who added the children sought shelter in the Tarrs’ home between Dieterich and Wheeler. “I’m very thankful. They could have been in the car during that storm.”

Rauch said it was the kids’ first-ever trip alone to see their dad.

Thus far, there has been one confirmation of a tornado in Effingham County, a report that one possibly touched down in Fayette County, as well as reports of several tornado and funnel cloud sightings throughout the area, along with reports of dime-, quarter- and golf ball-size hail.

Homes, trailers, barns and outbuildings throughout the area were reported partially or completely damaged; the number of structures damaged won’t be known until investigations by area and state emergency agencies are complete.

The one confirmed report of a tornado occurred five miles south of Dieterich at 5:04 p.m., said Russ Thomas, Effingham County Emergency Management Agency director.

The tornado was on the ground for at least 15 minutes as it traveled northeast into Jasper County, Thomas said. Damage from the tornado included a house, barns and outbuildings that were obliterated, as well as a house that lost a wall in the 2100th Street area, he said, adding no injuries were reported. A spokesperson for Effingham County Sheriff’s Department said the owner of residence destroyed had not been determined by presstime.

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