Jarrett and Andrew are inspecting the damage (around 4 p.m.) that was done to the cherry tree on August 28, 1990.
Sunday, August 29, 2010 - Yesterday was the 20th anniversary of the Plainfield Tornado. The storm system went right over our house before it went down to Will County and created unspeakable havoc. It was one of the scariest storms I've ever witnessed. And we did witness it in the very spot I'm sitting in right now.
Yeah, right in front of the window in the computer room. Jarrett was on my lap and Andrew was right beside me. It was unbelievable fury that was being unleashed before our eyes! The thing about it was that we usually get storms from the southwest -- but this one came from the northwest. weird!
We thank Johnson's Mound (a kame) for saving us from death and destruction... well, at least that day. Apparently, the boys were supposed to live for a few more years.
Bob didn't feel good so he had stayed home and didn't go to work. He was upstairs in bed. The boys and I were downstairs. Andrew was 4 and Jarrett was 2 so they weren't in school yet. And I'm REALLY thankful for that.
Here's the story from The Beacon News today (8/29/2010):
The Plainfield tornado, as it is generally known, was caused by a microburst, a powerful blast of air that descends rapidly and spreads in all directions.
T.T. Fujita, then a professor at the University of Chicago and one of the nation's leading tornado researchers, said at the time that the Will County tornado had winds of more than 260 mph. It traveled more than 16 miles on the ground and varied in width from one-quarter to one-half mile.
The twister had its origin in a storm front that first spawned a small tornado that touched down at 1:30 p.m. near Rockford. The storm blew through DeKalb County, then entered northern Kane County just before 3 p.m., flipping planes at the Aurora Municipal Airport (actually Sugar Grove). At about 3:30 p.m., the twister ripped into Will County.
The tornado first touched down in Will County in the Wheatland Plains subdivision where an estimated 50 houses were hit. Three fatalities were reported on Route 30 in north Plainfield.
The twister then demolished Plainfield High School, where three people were killed. It severely damaged St. Mary Immaculate Church and School in Plainfield, where the principal, Sister Mary Keenan, was found dead in the rubble with two other victims.
Much of an eight-block area between Willardshire Road and Caton Farm Road in Joliet was flattened. Nearly two-thirds of Grand Prairie Grade School was demolished. A half-dozen people died in subdivisions along Caton Farm Road.
The Crest Hill Lakes apartment complex in Crest Hill was hit hard: the 48-unit, three-story building was leveled. Eight people died.
The high winds tore down thousands of trees and power lines. Fires broke out in a number of buildings that were torn apart.
Somewhere we have a picture of St. Mary Immaculate Church that Grandpa and Grandma Berg took when they came to visit shortly after the tornado hit. Can't really tell you where that is right now. It could be that I've never scanned it.
Remember in those days, we didn't yet have digital cameras. Oh yeah, the olden days. all righty. Stay safe out there. later, djb