2012-10-18 / Front Page

Tornado Almost Destroys at Least One Home

At least one tornado ripped through the Lexington area last Saturday night, downing trees, tearing up barns and other structures, and causing serious damage to at least one home.

Darene and Cecil Rexroat, who live on CR 408 about 4.5 miles southeast of Lexington, were coming home from College Station at about 7 p.m., when they received a telephone call from Darene’s cousin, who lives next door to them. She told them that a tornado had just passed between their two houses.

Darene said her cousin was concerned, but couldn’t tell if there had been any damage to the Rexroat’s property, as there had not been any (that she could see) at her place.

The Rexroats continued their drive home and didn’t hit rain until they were at FM 696 E and CR 401. By the time they had gone another 4 miles, the rain had stopped and they were within three miles of their home. It was about 7:30 p.m.

Darene said they weren’t particularly worried, despite their cousin’s phone call. But, when they arrived home, what they saw took their breath away!

She said, “Our jaws dropped! There was just enough light for us to see the outline of things. As we approached our property, we saw immediately that our barn had suffered quite a bit of damage. Then we noticed several trees, including the huge oak we have in our front yard, were severely damaged. We turned into the driveway and saw debris all over the driveway and the yard. Our garden shed was gone, but the garden tools and stuff were still on the slab. As the lights from the car shown on our house, we couldn’t believe it. The roof was curled back like someone had opened a can of sardines! The tin was all twisted up, and some of it was in the yard. I noticed that my two rocking chairs, which had been on the front porch, were gone, but the wreath hanging on the front door was still there. It was surreal. It still is.”

As it turned out, the Rexroat’s home suffered serious damage. Their washing shed was completely gone. The barn had also suffered a great deal of damage. Interestingly, a room the Rexroats had added on to their wood frame home was completely intact, with no apparent damage. That’s where they slept Saturday night.

“It was the only dry room in the house,” said Darene.

Despite the shock and the loss of possessions, Darene and Cecil are grateful they didn’t suffer more. Their beautiful horses were obviously shook, but had suffered no ill effects. Their dog was fine, albeit a little shaken. Darene said she had not seen her cat yet, but cats have a way of “getting out of the way” when trouble is near.

They have already begun putting things together, as they plan repair and reconstruction. “We’re just grateful everyone in our neighborhood is ok,” said Darene. “It really could have been worse.”

The David and Pat McKinley property, located on CR 405 less than a mile from the Rexroats, also had some tornado damage. Other area neighbors lost trees. But, as Darene said, for the most part, everything weathered the storm pretty well, and life is returning to normal for everyone.

Saturday’s storms brought up to 4” of rain to the area.

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