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Cleanup Begins After Fatal Tornadoes

March 24, 1991|From Associated Press

SELMER, Tenn. — Residents and volunteers cleared away the wreckage of homes and businesses Saturday in the wake of tornadoes that killed five people in Tennessee and Kentucky.

"All I can remember is rolling over and over and people screaming," Jerry Inman said as he picked through the rubble of his used car business. "I don't know how any of us lived through it."

Ten people had sought shelter from the storm in a mobile home that served as Inman's office. A tornado left only the trailer's twisted metal chassis.

Inman and his wife, Peggy, ended up 150 yards from the trailer's original location. A prospective customer was killed when the twister dropped a car on him.

The tornado hospitalized 17 Selmer residents, and dozens were treated for cuts and bruises.

Three other Tennessee residents also were killed, and an 11-year-old boy was killed in Kentucky when his grandparents' mobile home was slammed against a tree.

In Minnesota, freezing rain, snow and strong winds Saturday toppled an 850-foot ice-covered television tower, hundreds of trees and power lines in the Duluth area.

No injuries were reported, but Minnesota Power reported power outages affecting thousands of homes. The outages disrupted 911 emergency telephone service in Duluth for several hours and left the National Weather Service office temporarily without forecast information.

Tornadoes also struck parts of Iowa, northeastern Mississippi and eastern Illinois.

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