Xenia, OH Terrible Tornado, Apr 1974
BODIES STILL BEING FOUND
The grim death count continued to rise all morning as ambulances brought the fatalities to the OSSO Home Armory, serving as a temporary morgue.
Last night a temporary morgue was set up in the new wing at Greene Memorial Hospital, where county Coroner JUSTIN KRAUSE and sheriff's detectives fingerprinted and tagged 21 bodies.
The bodies were then transported to the Montgomery County morgue. There the victims were photographed for later identification.
THis morning the morgue was moved and the same process continued until about 28 bodies had been transferred to Montgomery County.
Officials said all bodies will now be kept at the OSSO Armory and identification will be made there by relatives.
The number of dead was expected to rise considerably as the day progresses since more bodies have been found today in the rubble. A child victim died last night at Children's Medical Center. THERESA CROSS, 2, daughter of MRS. CHARLENE CROSS, 795 Doral Drive, died of injuries about 10 p.m.
GMH officials gave definite identification on another victim, DOROTHY ROWLAND, but with no age or address.
DEVASTATION ROARED INTO XENIA AT 4:40
The devastation has been likened to World War II saturation bombing.
Xenia was virtually wiped off the map at 4:40 p.m. yesterday. As were most of its industries and most of its schools.
All but about two supermarkets were leveled, making food supplies questionable. Perishables left in those still standing have spoiled.
The city's perimeters were cordoned off, leaving many Xenians stranded as far as five miles from town. They parked and walked to their homes -- or what was left of them.
At 1 a.m. today there still were distraught parents walking anxiously through the downtown area looking for their children. And there still were some teenagers walking the streets, some returning home after cleaning the debris and whatever else seemed useful.
By 9 o'clock last night the hard-hit downtown area had been sealed off to all but patrolmen and national guardsmen, some of them zealous in their threats to shoot anyone who looked like a looter.
One Daily Gazette employe stopped at the office at 11:30 p.m. after working to find survivors since the storm hit. He had been thrown to the ground by the big wind's force. And he still had not found his own family.
Those coming into town from the fringes described the sky as "fiery red" from lights of emergency vehicles. Downtown, sirens screamed from an endless success of ambulances, police cruisers, fire trucks, flasher-equipped private cars, utility vehicles, tree service trucks, dump trucks, bulldozers, cranes and emergency light rigs.
By 2 a.m. today South Detroit Street between Main and Second resembled an Army training ground as units from the 178th Tactical Air National Guard of Springfield filed off Ohio Masonic Home buses and formed for their orders. Rumors of another approaching twister sent one busload directly into the basement of the Gazette building, which is a Civil Defense-equipped shelter.
Rumors were rampant. Some of the most horrible proved to be true, but for the most part there was thankfulness -- just for life.
The number of identified dead resulting from Wednesday's killer storm reached 22 today with six more unidentified, according to a list released by Greene Memorial Hospital.
Listed as dead are:
WILLIAM KENT ARMSTRONG, 7, son of Paul Chambers, 1654 Wigwam Trail.
EVELYN ROCKHOLD, 49, 10 Temple Drive.
DIANNA M. HALL, 22, 582 Center St.
MRS. JOHNNY (WILLIAM E.) MOTT, 52, 261 Hawley Court.
RUTH A PALMER, 82, 721 Trumbull St.
TERESA CROSS, 2, 795 Doral Drive.
ROBERT MILLER, 9, 2122 Pueblo Drive.
MRS. OLLIE (MINOR) GROOMS, 82, 703 Trumbull St.
MRS. MARILYN (VIRGIL E.) MILLER, 33, 1830 Gayhart St.
SHERRY LYNN GRAHAM, 3, and her brother, DAVID, 8, of 266 Trumbull St.
LAURA HALL, 20, no address.
CLYDE H. HYATT, 49, 1218 Rockwell Drive.
BRIAN BLAKELY, 7, 1219 Roxbury Drive.
JOYCE BEHNKEN, 22, 1528 Commonwealth Drive.
CLARE IRENE PAGETT, 62, 725 N. West St.
MRS. VIRGINIA (ROBERT R.) WALLS, 38, 1551 Commonwealth Drive.
MRS. DOROTHY (DEWEY A.) ROWLAND, 47, 438 Amsterdam Drive.
PAUL R. WISECUP, 530 Newport Road.
AMY WISECUP, 16-month-old daughter of PAUL R., 530 Newport Road.
OSCAR T. ROBINSON, 41, Mason Ave., Wilberforce.
RICHARD ADAMS, (no age listed), 607 Wilson Drive.
DICK SHOT PURNOCA, (no age and no address.)
Also Reported dead by the Montgomery County Coroner's office are:
LINDA WRIGHT, no address or age listed.
MICHAEL JARNETTE, 16, no address.
RALPH SMITH, 5, no address.
LINDA McKIBBON, no age or address.
DIXIT DRADHAKBHAKER, no age or address.
DIANA HALL was a waitress at the A & W Rootbeer stand that was leveled.
McColaugh Funeral Home will conduct services for DIANNA HALL, CLYDE HYATT, JOYCE BEHNKEN, RICHARD ADAMS, and WILLIAM K. ARMSTRONG. Services will be held at Neeld Funeral Home for the grandchildren, CLARA I. PAGETT, MRS. GROOMS, TERESA CROSS, and MRS. MOTT.
Services for MRS. ROWLAND will be conducted at Hoyne Funeral Home, 1817 East Second St., Dayton.
The Xenia Daily Gazette Ohio 1974-04-04