Tornado in Terradyne

October 11, 2007
By Holly B, Andover, KS

"Pass it here Jake!" I screamed to my brother. Our first year in Kansas after moving from Alabama seemed to be very eventful. We had moved to a great neighborhood called Terradyne and quickly made many friends. My brother and I were outside playing catch on the trampoline with the kids across the street. My mom called us in for a delicious dinner. My dad finished grilling the juicy steaks on our new deck. It was the perfect family scene, or so we thought. My family had moved many times but never lived in a state considered part of tornado ally. Suddenly without warning, it started sprinkling and the big black clouds were moving rapidly. This is where the story really begins.

"Tonight I would expect a tremendous amount of thunder storms and high winds," the weatherman droned on the TV. It had just started sprinkling and I had left the KU bouncy ball outside, so I hurried to retrieve it. When I strolled outside it seemed a great deal colder and more humid than before. For some reason it felt a little eerie. I thought the weather appeared extremely weird for May. Back inside a few minutes later, we noticed it started pouring. Inside the warm and cozy house everything looked to be normal; dad and brother playing monopoly, mom folding clean clothes. My thoughts of another boring night were interrupted by the blaring beeps across the TV screen. The weatherman now announced we could have some horrible weather and possibly a few tornados.

About twenty minutes later, we heard the tornado siren. Terrified, we all darted down to the basement and took a few items with us. My heart was racing and I could barely think. Unexpectedly the power went out and the sudden darkness felt blinding. We had not thought to bring flashlights and by now there were no stars in the sky. My dad ventured up stairs to find them and while up there he noticed that the once blue, cloudless sky had turned a grayish green. Back down stairs, we all waited listening to the rain beat down on the windows like drums wondering if anything would really happen.

Suddenly the rain ceased, and the earsplitting silence sliced through the cold night air. My heart was pounding so loud surely everyone in the dark room could hear it. The wind, starting to pick up, could be heard whipping around the old brick house. "Why did we have to move to Kansas," I thought to myself. I felt like I was trapped inside the Wizard of Oz Movie and if I clicked my heels together everything would some how go back to normal. A sound like a train whistle rattled the house and nobody dared to move. For a moment I actually thought my heart would stop. My mom, breaking the silence, spoke first. She cautiously asked "Does anyone know what that was?" No one answered.

The power came back on abruptly. The weatherman announced that the horrible weather moved to another part of the state, so we all went back upstairs. Everything seemed to be alright inside the house. What went on outside though surprised us all.

When we stepped out on to our newly finished back deck we smelled the sweet smell of wet grass and muggy air. Everything seemed to be okay, but something appeared different. "The trampoline" my brother exclaimed, "It's not there!" We all dashed down the stairs to the soggy, muddy, grass and looked into the neighbor's yard. In a crumpled ball all broken and bended there it sat. It had knocked down two small trees and scratched up an electrical box. We started hauling the pieces of damaged metal to my dad's new truck.

I asked my mom if she thought it was a tornado or not. She just stated blankly, "I don't know, I don't know". I still believe that Terradyne had its own mini tornado that dark and eerie night even if my parents just think it was "heavy winds". We have not gotten another trampoline since then and probably never will. I will always remember that night. So every time we hear a tornado siren we all know what to expect and think of the time when our trampoline was demolished.

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