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Eye Witness Reports

Men who have had tough combat service in the last war declare the sight of injured in local hospital is fully as horrifying as the worst battles they experienced.

In addition to demolished Glazier and Higgins, a trip into the area and you will see only stubs of sagebrush, railway signals blown off, bark peeled off fence post by terrific winds and barbed wire torn away and scattered over the countryside, telephone lines are a mass with large crew of linemen working frantically, splinters so thick over a field they lapped, crumpled corrugated from over most fields, windmill towers snapped off.

One Air Corps pilot, after viewing the great number of seriously injured in Shattuck Hospital, declared if he had a camera and could record on film what he had seen, his wife wouldn’t even believe such a thing could happen to citizens who minutes before were the friendly and happy folks they are known to be.

Two very small youngsters, not identified, were found wondering in the wheat field, their clothes badly torn. Garland Wilson, Shattuck Theater owner, found them

Though the families of Frank Getz, Lloyd Hahn, W. E. Davis and Henry Stripe were reported not injured, the tornado did a lot of damage to their homes and barns. At one place a barn was reported to have caved in on a bunch of livestock and those who heard the S. O. S. call for help had not yet learned the great damage the storm had done.

A Shattuck man accompanied a Highway Patrolman to Higgins, where huddled in corners were groups of injured persons, wet and cold and covered with wash cement dust, and showing they had received a great shock within the few seconds the storm lasted.

Searchers came upon an aged Higgins woman into whose center forehead the wind had blown a 16-penny nail up to the head. They declared that her eyeballs were completely gone, blown away by the same wind that peeled the bark off all fence posts. She was not identified.

D. B. McNamee, 51-year-old former station agent at Higgins and now a rural carrier out of there, reported that Anita, his 5-year-old daughter, followed as the roof of his home was blown off. The child landed uninjured and walked to the home of a neighbor, where later she was found.

A Mexican woman, unable to speak a word of English, received a broken leg as she hurriedly alighted from a car in an attempt to enter the section house at Corburn, just west of Higgins.

Mrs. Mort McCormick, Higgins, went to Amarillo via ambulance. R. C. Weeks was searching all hospitals to locate his wife, 50, Higgins.

Tobe Manske reports that his brother, John Manske and family of Woodward are safe although their home was destroyed. His father, Ferdinand, who was staying with the Manskes at Woodward is also safe.

The farm place of H. H. Spomer, 10 miles west of Shattuck had the barn and windmill blown away. His home place had the barn destroyed. None of the immediate family were injured.

Transcribed from Ellis County Newspapers.

Independent Oklahoma History and Genealogy
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