Fri | Jun 2, 2023

Tornadoes kill at least 11 across US Midwest and South

Published:Saturday | April 1, 2023 | 12:11 PM
Debris litters a parking lot and vehicles are seen thrown around after a tornado touched down near the intersection of 23rd Avenue and Ninth Street in Coralville, Iowa, Friday, March 31, 2023. City crews, residents and neighbors worked to clear debris off the roadway and vehicles. (Jim Slosiarek/The Gazette via AP)

WYNNE, Ark. (AP) — Tornadoes that tore through parts of the South and Midwest killed at least 11 people, collapsed the roof of a packed theatre during a heavy metal concert in Illinois, and left small towns and big cities throughout the region bewildered Saturday by the damage.

Possibly dozens of tornadoes touched down into the night across at least seven states, laying waste to homes and businesses and splintering trees, as part of a sprawling storm system that also brought wildfires to the southern Plains and blizzard conditions to the Upper Midwest.

Tens of thousands lost power as the storms smothered a swath of the country home to some 85 million people.

The dead included four in the small towns of Wynne, Arkansas, and three in Sullivan, Indiana. Other deaths were reported in Alabama, Illinois, Mississippi and the Little Rock area.

Stunned residents of Wynne, a community of about 8,000 people 50 miles west of Memphis, Tennessee, woke Saturday to find the high school's roof shredded and its windows blown out.

Huge trees lay on the ground, their stumps reduced to nubs.

Broken walls, windows and roofs pocked homes and businesses.

Recovery was already underway, with workers using chain saws to cut fallen trees and bulldozers moving material from shattered structures. Utility trucks worked to restore power. Groups of volunteers gathered to plan their day.

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