Tornado that hit Mountain View peeled roof off hospital

by Melissa Yeager, KY3 News

Tornado that hit Mountain View peeled roof off hospital

By Gene Hartley

MOUNTAIN VIEW, Ark. -- Cleanup has started here in Stone County, where a tornado destroyed homes and a hospital. The tornado that struck here also went through Atkins and Clinton, killing 12 people in all.

Family and friends are helping Gary and Kathy martin, both by helping pick up the pieces and by offering support.

“We heard it coming. It sounded like a train coming. The house started shaking,” said Gary Martin.

The couple made it through the storm by squeezing into their bathroom shower.

“I carried my pocket cross and she was praying,” he said.

The prayers worked. Both left the bathroom without a scratch, which is especially lucky because the storm hit the Stone County Medical Center hard.

“We knew we took a direct hit,” said hospital Administrator Karen Craft.

The tornado peeled back the roof and damaged the emergency room but the 17 patients inside were fine.

“We got them transferred to a nursing home which is local here in Mountain View and we had hospital employees showing up going there to work with patients,” said Craft.

The newly built surgery area was spared, and was in good enough shape that they're going to continue to use it as an emergency room so they can keep serving the community.

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