Greensburg Tornado - Two Women Survive Inside Church
Names of Some Victims Released
Posted: 11:14 PM May 4, 2007
Last Updated: 9:26 PM May 7, 2007
Reporter: KAKE News
5-7-07 - Greensburg Mayor Lonnie McCollum says two tornado survivors were found Sunday night in the basement of the Mennonite Church. The two elderly women are unhurt after being trapped for two days. Also, two bodies were recovered early Monday morning, bringing the death toll to 10.
A total of ten bodies have been recovered so far. Five names were released Monday:
laude Hopkins - 79
Larry Hoskins - 51
David Lyon - 48
Colleen Panzer - 77
Ron Rediger - 57
An 11th person died just to the northeast near Hopewell.
Officials said earlier on Monday that they found a man alive in the rubble of a Greensburg home overnight. But that information turned out to be false - what authorities blamed on a miscommunication among search crews.
Residents were allowed to return to town Monday monring. FEMA was on hand all day in the community. They told the nation during a news conference in the afternoon that FEMA was already beginning work to help. That includes brining in trailers to provide temporary housing for all residents impacted.
The state is bringing in an AM transmitter soon to broabast information. The arrival and frequency have yet to be determined.
The tornado that hit Greensburg has been rated as an EF-5 by the National Weather Service - the largest rating on the Enhanced Fujita Scale and the first in Kansas since the new scale was implemented.
The twister was 1.7 miles wide. A storm of this magnitude is the first in 8 years in the US - the last was May 3rd of 1999 in central Oklahoma. The Greensburg tornado was on the ground for 22 miles non-stop and 30 minutes. Maximum winds were estimated at 205 mph. This is the first fatal storm in southwest Kansas since 1967.
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Approximately 75 to 90 percent of the buildings in Greensburg are damaged or destroyed. Power outages have been reported throughout Kiowa and surrounding counties. Cell phones and land line communications were also severely impacted.