Clubb, Centerville, MO Tornado, Mar 1964


Centerville, Mo. (AP) -- A tornado destroyed two small schools Wednesday, injuring 13 students and a teacher at one as it slashed through three southeast Missouri counties. No deaths were reported.
The twister, which touched down first in this Reynolds County seat, moved on to neighboring Wayne County where it hit the school in Clubb. Two of the children injured were reported in serious but not critical condition.
Teacher WILL MEADOR and the other 11 students were not believed badly hurt. All were taken to hospitals in Poplar Bluff and Fredericktown, Mo.
Twenty-four children in school at Garwood, also in Reynolds County, escaped injury although the school was blown down around them.
"We were told the teacher, DEWEY MILLION, herded them into a corner of the school and possibly saved them," said Sgt. H. P. Bruner of the Missouri Highway Patrol.
The twister caused considerable property damage but no reported injuries when it hit Centerville.
Then it skipped southeast to Silva in Wayne County where at least three buildings were toppled. No injuries were reported at Silva.
Sgt. Lloyd Murphy of the Highway Patrol at Poplar Bluff said the tornado damaged a farm house near that city and flattened a barn, killing several head of cattle. He said there were half a dozen other reports of rural residents suffering injuries of varying degrees but no reports of fatalities.
"That's a thinly populated area," the sergeant said, "or we'd have had lots more injured."
He said a Missouri forester in a fire tower reported the tornado left a path of destruction about 200 yards wide. "That's a pretty wide one," the sergeant said. "We'll probably be getting reports of injuries for a day or two as communications are down in much of the area."
The children from Clubb were taken to hospitals in private cars.
Sgt. Murphy said Highway 34, main road in the area, was blocked by downed trees and Highway Department crews had to cut them away before traffic could move.
Volunteers were still clearing debris in the area last night.
Torrential rains accompanied by sleet and hail preceded and followed the tornado.

Daily Capital News Jefferson City Missouri 1964-03-26