SELECTIVE STORM: Panora Tornado Splinters, Spares

Without a basement to run to, a shower served as the best way to ride out the storm in Panora.

A tornado was behind extensive damage in Guthrie County.

After studying the damage the National Weather Service said the EF2 tornado first touched down near Guthrie Center. It remained on the ground for 25-minutes hitting Panora with 115-mile per hour winds. Nearly 17-miles later the tornado finally lifted near Yale.

The tornado did its most severe damage near Lake Panorama, but even there, it was very selective about its targets.

It left the buds on the peonies but ripped the top off the next tree.

A storm that could splinter a 2×6, left the fuzz on the dandelions.

The robin’s house was spared, the Douglas’ wasn’t.

Compare the hosta to the hickory and witness vivid proof of Mother Nature’s power and her precision.

She could destroy these eight condominiums off Lake Panorama, while sparing the life of 88-year-old Walt Brammer.

“I was watching TV until he got to two miles south of Guthrie Center,” he recalled, “and then I got up. And then I listened a little closer and when that thing hooked to the left I said ‘I’m going.’ And then I went in there.”

tornado panoraThere was no basement, so Brammer headed to the middle of the house.

“Walking from this direction, and I get in here and I just plop myself up next to the glass, and this is where I stood.”

The storm ripped apart the structure, and then the rain poured over him.

“No electricity and I’m here with a flashlight trying to see a ceiling—I couldn’t see any ceiling!”

He says he lost 75% of his belongings, but seems to have saved 100% of his good spirit.

“You know, it happens,” Brammer said. “I got out of it with my life so I feel pretty lucky.”

For such a furious storm, it was oddly selective.

Mother Nature’s unforgettable Mother’s Day – showing might and mercy alike.

Walt Brammer was the only one home in his complex at the time of the storm. His neighbors were either out of town or they are weekenders who had already gone home.

The tornado hit only a few structures in the area, but Bramer’s eight-unit complex is almost a total loss.