**UNLESS AVAILABLE/SOURCED FROM A GOVERNMENT WEBSITE OR GIVEN OUR EXPLICIT PERMISSION, NO IMAGES OR OTHER MEDIA FROM THIS SUMMARY ARE TO BE REDISTRIBUTED IN ANY WAY. SOME OF THIS MATERIAL WE HAVE OBTAINED UNDER VERY SPECIFIC PERMISSIONS TO FEATURE. WE WILL TAKE ACTION IF ANY REPOSTINGS OR REDISTRIBUTIONS ARE FOUND OF THE FOLLOWING SUMMARY CONTENT.**

Stats

Path length: 44.86 miles

Width:  2430 yards

Fatalities:  17 (3 were indirect)

Injuries:  125

Rating:  EF4

County:  Jackson, DeKalb (AL) / Dade, Walker (GA)

EF Scale Map

Corrected Coordinates Based on Analysis of Ground Level, Aerial, and Satellite Imagery, as well as all Reliable Damage Reports:

Start: 34.64420 / -85.94505    End: 34.95800 / -85.26921

SPC Map

SPC Coordinates:

Start: 34.6208/-85.9814     End: 34.9531/-85.2666

Imagery Map

KHTX Afternoon Radar Loop

Throughout history, the spirit of the phrase “The calm before the storm” has been truthfully used as a prelude for the retelling of countless weather disasters. When it comes to the tornado this summary will detail, it couldn’t be further from the reality.

We are overwhelmingly grateful to our contributors for this summary series. Only through their aid can the full story of this tornado and those affected be told. Bob Graham, J.T. Nelson, Philip Brown, Paul Smith and Southwood Presbyterian Church all provided permission for us to feature their photos. Zachary Reichle gave us valuable input. A special thank you in particular to Chris Darden for allowing us to interview him and for the hundreds of remarkable images he took the time to dig up for us.

This is the free version of this summary.  There is a PREMIUM version as well that shows more exclusive photos and information.  If you are a paid member of Tornado Talk, click here to read summary.  Learn about becoming a member here!  

The Morning Storms

Between 7 and 8 am, anyone still asleep in far northeastern Alabama and northwestern Georgia was likely shaken out of their bed by the fierce storms that rolled through. On its own, this Quasi Linear Convective System (QLCS) was one for the history books. Within this region, massive straight-line winds caused damage equal to that of a minor twister across most of Jackson and DeKalb Counties, AL, and a large chunk of Dade County, GA. A remarkably powerful comma head feature in the QLCS line of storms spat out a number of small tornadoes as well, adding to the chaos. This was a herald of far worse to come later that same day.

KHTX Morning Radar Loop

The sheer scope of overlapping morning and afternoon damage made it impossible to map all of the twisters within a reasonable amount of time. In the case of this summary, it is necessary to mention one location; the residence of Wayne and Kathy Haney. Their story was told in an article from the Associated Press (AP) on May 1, 2011, and in the Jackson County Sentinel on April 23, 2021.

A photo of Wayne and Kathy Haney. Image from Find A Grave.

The Pisgah couple had been married 23 years and lived within a half-mile of several family members along County Road 359. Right next door lived Kathy’s parents, and her sister Peggy Lawhorn had a mobile home across the street. That week the Haney’s and their extended family were looking forward to the wedding of their niece, Whitney.

Per the Associated Press article, Wayne was asleep in the recliner in the living room when Kathy rushed in. “She said, ‘I think there’s a tornado,’” Wayne told the paper. “And just as she said the word ‘tornado,’ it hit us.”

The mobile home was lifted into the air and landed in a row of trees. Their piano landed on Kathy, and the rest of the house collapsed on top of them. Wayne told the Associated Press that he wrapped his arms around his wife’s legs and tried to pull her close to him. “She said, ‘Honey, I love you, and I’m hurting.’” These would be the last words Wayne would hear from his loving wife.

After the twister passed, Peggy, her husband Richard, and her father Cecil began investigating the damage. They found a large piece of tin in the yard. They peered beyond an oak tree that had tumbled and saw the remains of Kathy and Wayne’s mobile home. At this point, they were all under the assumption that they were not home. As they got closer to the destruction, they realized that was not the case as Wayne’s muffled cries for help were heard amid the rubble.

They were able to free Wayne from the wreckage and immediately called for an ambulance. It took about 90 minutes for the crew to drive through debris-ridden roadways to reach the scene. During this time, Cecil used a tractor with a front-loader attachment to remove the shattered remnants of the mobile home to try to help Kathy. Peggy said they used a car jack to get the piano off her.

“A couple of girls that came with the ambulance put a white sheet over Kathy’s body,” Peggy told the Jackson County Sentinel. “I had to touch her before they covered her up. I had to have that closure and know that she really was gone.”

Eight hours later…

A long track, violent twister dissipated at 3:38:20 pm CST in Marshall County, AL. In the hour prior, it had taken six lives and devastated several communities. This was the Cullman tornado, which you can read about here. Over the next 25 minutes, the parent supercell thunderstorm sped northeast into Jackson County. During this time, a new mesocyclone slowly but surely formed and organized, replacing that which had struck Cullman.

The beginning of this tornado was deduced to be 2.8 miles NW of Dutton on Sand Mountain. When the twister first began around 4:05:30 pm CST, it was big. At birth, the EF0 windfield of the vortex pushed 1,000 yards (0.57 miles) in diameter – far larger than any other violent tornado in the outbreak at inception. Tornadogenesis occurred over Alabama State Route 40 and the Tacobet Flea Market, which did not sustain any apparent serious damage.

At the time of the event, Tornado Talk writer and researcher Zachary Reichle was 14 years old. He remembered seeing it form from the other side of the river in Scottsboro. Quoted below is an excerpt from his funnel feature remembering that day, which you can read in its entirety here.

“As clear as day, I remember a particularly dark mass revealing itself as it moved along the Tennessee River valley. Day turned to night in an instant…. It’s as if something was pushing this one section of clouds towards the ground, surrounded by layers of ragged sheets of rain. I kept looking in awe when I suddenly realized what I was observing. A bolt of lightning shot from the wall of the spinning mass’ side, revealing evil tentacles rotating behind the shield of rain. I was witnessing the beginning of what would be a violent tornado, which began moving up the mountainside too close to my home. Even if I wasn’t in imminent danger, I felt as if I was in the developing twister. I was watching ancient stories come to life, myths about tornadoes on mountains shatter, all in an instant. I didn’t realize that something so sinister could be so captivating. The dark mass continued to expand in size as it eventually disappeared out of my sight up the mountainside, leaving me amazed.”

The tornado almost immediately descended over 700 feet in elevation down into Jones Cove, an inlet of the Tennessee River. Most trees across a large swath of the bluff were snapped or uprooted. At the bottom, the vortex found the Camp Jackson Scout Reservation.

A tilted view looking from where the tornado started down into Jones Cove. NOAA Remote Sensing Division aerial imagery taken May 4, 2011, and Google Earth imagery taken August 29, 2011.
A view of the tornado as it moved through Jones Cove. Photo taken and provided by Paul Smith.

The camp’s Facebook page posted a 2016 presentation from the Greater Alabama Council, Boy Scouts of America, on April 15, 2022. It outlined the damage that occurred and the recovery effort. The camp would be closed for several years for cleanup and repair.

Powerful straight-line winds during the morning storms blew down numerous trees, but only on the far southeastern portion of their property in John Martin Hollow. The primary area of the camp, however, was directly hit by the more powerful afternoon twister. Access to the place itself was shut off by the mounds of downed vegetation. The OA Lodge, Ranger’s Cabin, and both bathhouses required extensive work. The Director’s Cabin, Shop Chapel, Cook’s Chapel, camp truck, 18 platforms, and all primitive campsites were destroyed. As of five years later, those last locations still needed to be cleaned up, and a few trails remained closed. Per the Greater Alabama Council, 250 loads of debris and 250 loads of downed logs were removed from Camp Jackson. On February 9, 2013, volunteers gathered to plant over 1000 trees on the front side of the camp.

Three views of damage at the camp. Images from Camp Jackson.

By the time the tornado reached County Road 88 less than five minutes after formation, the 1,500-yard (0.85 mile) wide vortex was extremely formidable. A loose trail of small debris leading to an empty cinder block foundation was all that remained of a small brick house belonging to the Maynor family. The remnants had apparently been accelerated to such high speeds that some asphalt was partially broken and shattered from a road 60 yards downwind. Fortunately, no one was home when the structure was annihilated.

Across the street was Camp ToKnowHim. Roy and Ginny Nelson began construction on the Christian youth camp in 2000. They were interviewed in a May/June 2012 article for Farmers Telecommunication Cooperative (FTC). We talked with their son J.T. as well about some of the details. The twister left virtually no identifiable trace of two very large RVs. Another residential vehicle, a shipping container full of equipment, a mobile home outside the grounds, and Camp ToKnowHim’s Small Group building were also destroyed. Per J.T., Jolee Smith’s nearby residence had additional roofing loss. Violent impact marks were left across the area, along with debarking of trees and severe low-lying vegetation damage. “Acres of forest were demolished,” Roy told FTC. “Paths couldn’t be walked. Our small group facility was heavily damaged. We lost our ropes course, zip line, rope swing, waterfront, rappel site – all of our ‘toys.’”

Several groups came to volunteer their time to help with the cleanup at Camp ToKnowHim. Southwood Presbyterian Church in Huntsville, AL, had used the facility for several retreats for their congregation. On May 7, 2011, a team of students, parents, deacons, and elders arrived at the camp to help with recovery. Per a blog article on the church’s website, “The team went with chainsaws, ATV’s, trailers, front-end loaders, and an artillery of other tools in order to clean up the devastation of the tornadoes. The main areas of concern were to salvage as much of the small group facility (the barn) as possible, to clear the hundreds of trees that are down on the camp, to clear the debris that was blown into the camp from surrounding areas, and to assist Roy and Ginny with cleaning up and fixing damage to their home.”

A before and after view of some of the damage along County Road 88. USGS before imagery taken October 30, 2010, and NOAA after imagery taken May 4, 2011.  

The Small Group building. Image from Camp ToKnowHim.

Roy Nelson was able to see the blessings amid the destruction at Camp ToKnowHim. He told FTC, “God taught us something amazing in that time. We had groups scheduled to come. We were sort of embarrassed about the camp but grateful they would want to come at all. We told them there was nothing to do. But group after group came anyhow and they all said the same thing – it was the best retreat ever. The kids were so impacted by the destruction they saw all around. It made them realize just how powerful and fragile life is. Youth pastors said it made the worship and the teaching more meaningful.”

Cleanup at the Small Group Building. Image from Southwood Presbyterian Church.

A mile downwind, the circulation crossed County Road 88 a second time. Two outbuildings and a single-wide were destroyed, and a home was battered. Shrubs near the center were stripped and partially debarked. Just beyond, subvortices danced across a field of long grass. Tree debris once again left numerous marks as they were accelerated into the vegetation. The southern side of the twister swiped over a handful of residences on County Road 432. One site-built house lost its entire roof, with a few others sustaining lesser degrees of loss. Two manufactured homes were dashed to pieces. The video below was taken 1.7 miles SE of the center.

The violent winds rolled through County Roads 369 and 357. Thirteen dwellings were lost and dozens more damaged. Friendship Baptist Church was also hit and required extensive repairs. You can view the twister over this location at the beginning of the video below.

A labeled view of the path through County Roads 369 and 357. Image created using Google Earth and NOAA Remote Sensing Division aerial imagery taken May 4, 2011.

The first fatalities caused by the Flat Rock-Trenton tornado occurred in a home off County Road 369. Per a May 2, 2011 article in the Jackson County Sentinel, Ann Satterfield, 81 and her husband Herbert, 90, were described as “good people, the best kind of neighbors anyone could hope to have.” It was reported they were on the phone with friends right before the tornado hit. Their frame house was swept clean of its cinder block foundation, with an adjacent F-150 pickup truck blown 20 yards into a felled tree. Severe debarking occurred to a grove, and a 45-foot tall hardwood tree was ripped out of the ground and dragged 30 yards.

The Jackson County Sentinel interviewed the Satterfield’s granddaughter. “It all just shows how precious life is and how quickly it can be taken away.” Even more heartbreaking is the fact that Herbert’s great-niece was Kathy Haney, who died during the morning storms.

A before and after view of damage at and around the Satterfield property, with their home swept away near center. USGS before imagery taken October 30, 2010, and NOAA after imagery taken May 4, 2011.  

Willis and Pat Shavers lived across the street from the Satterfields. The couple was interviewed in an April 26, 2012, article in the Jackson County Sentinel. Willis was home when the tornado tore through the rural Pisgah neighborhood. He was with the couple’s son Joseph. Per the newspaper, “Willis has progressive supernuclear palsy, a movement disorder that occurs from damage to certain nerve cells in the brain. Movement to any place is done only with a wheelchair.”

As the skies darkened and the sirens roared, Joseph placed his father in their wheelchair-accessible van and drove into the basement garage. As soon as they entered, the home collapsed on top of them. Both men survived. Pat was not home at the time; she was at the hospital. She told the newspaper, “That was the worst day of my life, lying in that hospital bed, wondering what all was going on.”

Family members spent days combing the rubble, looking for anything they could salvage. Old family photos were found nearby, dampened by rain. “They really are the only things we have left, along with wedding photographs of our children,” Pat said. The couple decided to rebuild on the site of their previous residence. They lived in a nursing facility and then an insurance-provided mobile home for eight months. The new house has an elevator lift for Willis, and the basement is equipped with a safe room. “I hope we never have to go back through another event like we did this time last year,” said Pat. “I’m thankful none of my family were killed in that storm, but I still think about all the people that were.”

King and Terry Boking had lived in their mobile home off County Road 369 for two months. They lost their first home to a fire only a few months prior and used their insurance money on the new residence. “We have nothing now and no money to pay for any of it,” said Terry in an April 29, 2011 article in the Jackson County Sentinel. “I was in the process of getting insurance on the house.” The Boking family was home but managed to get to shelter. Per the newspaper article, they ran to a basement that remained on the front of their property from an abandoned house. “We all ran in there and pulled down the metal door as it was hitting,” said Terry. King watched the tornado topple their new mobile home. “It was as if the storm just picked it up and turned it on its side.” He also commented about all the active weather they had seen that day. “The first storm we were lucky and by the second one, I’d gotten a little nervous, but the third one was a bad old boy.”

After another mile, the deadly twister pummeled a few more structures situated along County Roads 364, 652, and 363. While no ground-level views were found of this area, NOAA aerial imagery showed particularly high-end damage patterns. Several double-wides were obliterated. A pickup truck was rolled or bounced roughly 300 yards almost due north. Multiple nearby vehicles were also tossed close to 100 yards. A few substantial trees were ripped from the ground and transported significant distances. There was vicious denuding and debarking of mixed species, and lower-lying vegetation was crushed. There were signs of light grass scouring in small areas.

A tilted view using Google Earth of the path near County Roads 364, 652, and 363. NOAA Remote Sensing Division aerial imagery taken May 4, 2011.

This was the last inhabited land to be hit, not just in the Pisgah area but for another six and a half miles of the track. The tornado became progressively stronger and wider in this rugged terrain, destroying a huge swath of forest and spraying dirt across rocky outcrops and broken trunks.

A tilted view looking at some of the worst vegetation damage. Image created using Google Earth and NOAA Remote Sensing Division aerial imagery taken May 4, 2011.

The vortex crossed Alabama Highway 117 around 4:24:30 pm CST, about 1.5 miles NW of Flat Rock. It still possessed a diameter of 2,050 yards (1.16 miles). A half dozen houses received light to moderate damage, and one mobile home shattered. More residences were encountered along Alabama Highway 71, this time taking the roof and a couple of walls from a site-built house and leaving eight more dwellings irreparable. It then passed through a strip mine, where there was an unclear level of damage to equipment and disruption of operations. You can view the twister near Highway 117 in the video below.

A view of the path across Highways 117 and 71. NOAA Remote Sensing Division aerial imagery taken May 4, 2011, and Atlantic Group/USGS aerial imagery taken May 10, 2011.

Almost a dozen residences were condemned around the intersection of County Roads 81, 324, and 326. Frame houses were battered but mostly maintained structural integrity, except for one which lost its entire roof. A few manufactured homes were tossed and shredded.

Unfortunately, after this point, the destructive potential of the storm ramped up. A half mile further northeast, a score of County Road 95 dwellings were lost. This included two homes whose remains were left smeared across the ground from their foundations. Cars were dragged around, and surrounding woods were leveled. You can see the circulation over County Road 95 near the beginning of the video below.

A labeled view of the path across this area. NOAA Remote Sensing Division aerial imagery taken May 4, 2011, and Atlantic Group/USGS aerial imagery taken May 10, 2011.

Dewayne Anderson lived off County Road 326. In an interview with AL.com on May 3, 2011, he said he watched the tornado from his back porch. “All I saw was wind coming up from the southwest, and I saw trees go down. And all of a sudden, it changed directions and took the rest of my trees out. I wanted to know which way the trees would go, so if they were going to fall on my house I would know which way to run.” Dewayne’s home was spared, but his brother Tommy’s log cabin off County Road 324 was hit. It was the one off of this stretch of highway that lost its roof.

The Andersons’ first cousin Katherine Whited, 75, and her husband John, 77, lived in a small, brown frame house off County Road 95. They had a sign hanging on the door that said, “Two old crows live here.” Their story is told in a June 26, 2011, article in the Chattanooga Times Free Press and the AL.com May 3, 2011 publication.

The couple went down the road to their daughter Shelby’s larger house to check on her. They, along with Shelby, 58, and her former mother-in-law Janey Shannon, 80, were killed. “When I got there, there was total destruction,” said Jackson County Coroner John David Jordan to AL.com. “You couldn’t tell if it was a mobile home or a house (there). That much had blown away. It was like a bulldozer had pushed (the house) and moved it. There was so much debris, you had to look for bodies.” Per The Chattanooga Times Free Press, there was one survivor, Ronnie Shannon, Shelby’s adult son. He was thrown hundreds of feet from the house and had multiple injuries. The home of Katherine and John was “almost untouched.”

National Weather Service Warning Coordination Meteorologist Chris Darden was part of the survey team out of the Huntsville office. We had the honor of interviewing him and gained valuable insight into what was seen along the damage path. He also shared some heart-wrenching stories, including when they visited Shelby Shannon’s property. Chris said he and the survey team met with the National Guard off County Road 95. They walked up to what he described as a well-built house on a crawl space. They saw a young lady sitting near the rubble of what used to be the home. One of the guardsmen approached Chris and told him that she had lost her whole family. The girl had been to a party and wasn’t home when the tornado struck. Chris explained that she had heard what happened, came home, and found the bodies of her family.

“This was Saturday so this was 72 hours later. She had not left. She hadn’t talked to anybody. They basically had just built a tent around her, where she was sitting, and they were just waiting for her, I guess, to either decide that she was going to leave or seek help.”

Chris asked the guardsmen if it was okay to take photos of the remains of the home. He said yes, and told Chris that the girl probably wouldn’t speak to him. Chris continues, “I walk up and I sat beside her, and I tell her that I am from the National Weather Service, I am very sorry for your loss, and I hand her the card, and I said is it okay that we take some photos. She is sitting there, she is not even looking at me. She is just looking straight ahead. And all of a sudden a little tear starts to come down her face and she says, ‘That’s okay.’ And that’s all she ever said. Other than just a little tear it’s just completely expressionless.”

From left to right, Katherine, John and Janey. Images from Find A Grave.
The foundation of the Shannon home. A before view from October 2007 Google Street view is included at bottom right. Photo taken and provided by Bob Graham.

Larry Smith was given the name “Mayor of County Road 95” by the National Guard. According to a May 15, 2011 article in the Chattanooga Times Free Press, every day since the tornado, Larry would patrol the area up and down County Road 95 in his blue four-wheeler, looking for ways he could help. He did not have damage to his house, but his parent’s and brother’s homes were destroyed. Larry’s 88-year-old grandmother, Inez Bright, lived nearby, and her house did suffer some damage. She passed away just a few days before this Times-Press was published. Per Smith, “the stress of seeing the community where she lived her entire life destroyed was too much for her.”

In an interview with StormHope, Larry’s brother Steven told the story of how he and his parents survived. You can view this starting at the three minute mark in the video below.

After County Road 95, the twister steamrolled pockets of trees, turning branches into shrapnel that blanketed parts of grassy fields with pockmarks. While seven residences along County Road 295 were essentially destroyed, there was one particular property that experienced a direct hit from the violent core. It was owned by Annette and Tony Perry, who manage Cloud’s Pizza on Highway 71.

Chris Darden told this family’s amazing survival story in the interview with us and on the WeatherBrains podcast, episode 797. Three days after the tornado, Chris and his team were out surveying across Jackson and DeKalb Counties. He noted on the podcast that all day they had seen “nothing but carnage.” Late in the day, they approached the Perry farmstead. Hear Chris tell the story in his own words in the video below from Weather Brains:

Chris described to us in detail the damage to this property. According to him, a “pretty well built” single-story site-built house was swept away down to the flooring. Even most of the carpeting had been stripped. That, along with most major appliances, such as the washer, dryer, and fridge, had still not been located when Chris visited three days after the tornado. All of the plumbing was removed. A large, outdoor propane tank initially located directly behind the structure was ripped “out of the ground” and thrown into the yard in front of the foundation. Trees, especially in the woods downwind, were denuded and partially debarked. Two or three medium-sized trunks close to the dwelling were pulled out and moved substantial distances.

An aerial view of the swept away Perry home. NOAA Remote Sensing Division aerial imagery taken May 4, 2011.

All five farm buildings on this property were similarly demolished. None among their 40 head of cattle would survive. A portion had been outright killed, some by impact wounds. The rest initially appeared okay but had to be euthanized when closer inspection revealed mortal internal injuries. The vet who inspected them stated those particular injuries meant they had been lofted significant distances before slamming into the ground or other surfaces at fatal speeds.

Chris Darden, engineer Tim Marshall, and others reviewed the destruction to the house and ultimately designated it as high-end EF4 damage. Per our interview with Chris, “It was pretty well swept… it didn’t quite qualify for a 5. There was some small debris that was still around. The home was built pretty well, but there was some anchoring that was a little bit suspect with it. There was a little bit of the cow fencing that was still there, that had not been completely destroyed… In my mind, to this day, that tornado probably was a five. I kind of equate it to the Tuscaloosa tornado because I know how Birmingham struggled with that one. I struggled the same way when I was in Huntsville with this one. I think they were of similar magnitude.” You can see the tornado’s appearance as it destroyed the Perry family home at the beginning of the video below.

The vortex crossed into far northern DeKalb County at 4:31 pm CST, 2.2 miles SSW of Higdon. With a forward speed of roughly 50 mph, the 1,490-yard (0.85 mile) wide tornado plowed for almost a mile across largely unpopulated wooded areas. As it emerged into a clearing, two metal transmission towers were crushed to the ground. Unfortunately, on the other side of that field were dozens of residences.

A tilted view of tree damage along the Jackson/DeKalb County line. Image created using Google Earth and NOAA Remote Sensing Division aerial imagery taken May 4, 2011.
A labeled view of the County Road 155 area discussed below. Image created using Google Earth and NOAA Remote Sensing Division aerial imagery taken May 4, 2011.

The unrelenting twister immediately steamrolled a neighborhood on County Roads 960 and 155. Subvortices within the circulation careened into people’s homes and lives, crushing every wall within two site-built houses to rubble and leaving another 12 residences in various irreparable states. The concrete porch slab of a double-wide was knocked ten yards from its original location. The building itself (most likely hit by one of the subvortices) slammed into a tree 15 yards away. The sizable hardwood was pulled entirely out of the ground and carried an additional 50 yards with the remains of that structure. One of the cinder blocks the manufactured home rested on was dropped into the root ball crater the tree left behind.

Linda Boatner, 67, owned this residence. She was there with her granddaughter Chelsea Black, 20. They both lost their lives due to injuries suffered from the tornado. Linda’s daughter, Pamela Hill, lives in South Pittsburg, TN, and she was interviewed in 2021 by News Channel 9-Chattanooga. “People lost homes. Family. Belongings. Everything. There wasn’t much we salvaged from her house. Very, very few things,” Pamela said. A few weeks after the storm, a photo was found in Knoxville, TN. It was a picture of Pamela’s mother, dad, and son. “It was great, because my mother had shoeboxes and albums of pictures that were gone. Just having one meant a lot,” she said.

At left, Linda Boatner, and at right, Chelsea Black. Images from Find A Grave.
At left, Jewell Ewing, and at right, Terry Tinker. Images from Find A Grave.

The vortex moved over the intersection of County Roads 155 and 823 and began to follow the former street in a northeasterly direction. Another 11 residences were lost, with manufactured housing carried great distances before being granulated across the countryside. One particular row consisting of two single-wides and three double-wides was so badly obliterated that without knowledge of the area beforehand, one would not be able to determine with any certainty what or how many structures were once at that location. Groves of trees looked like clumps of broken matchsticks. High-velocity projectiles embedded into surfaces and clawed at anything exposed. Terry Tub Tinker, 50, and his mother, Jewell Tinker Ewing, 73, lived side-by-side in two of those mobile homes. Tragically, both were killed.

A before and after view of obliterated residences along County Road 155. USGS before imagery taken December 1, 2010, and NOAA after imagery taken May 4, 2011.  

The center tracked just south of the intersection of County Roads 155 and 814, taking 13 more residences with it. The debris of one large manufactured home was impressively wind-rowed hundreds of yards, with ground-apart remnants smeared across some fields. Both hardwood and softwood trees were completely delimbed, denuded, and severely debarked. The double-wide of Martha and William “Buddy” Michaels was bounced across County Road 814 before smashing into the other side. The metal frame ended up 120 yards northwest of its original location, with small gouges in the asphalt road from its journey. Additionally, the roof of Shiloh Community Church was battered beyond repair. Photos showed that in the first few days after April 27th, the property was a focal point for distributing basic necessities to those in need.

A view of the intersection of County Roads 155 and 814. Photo from the Civil Air Patrol.
Where the manufactured home of Martha and William once stood. Image from the NWS Huntsville.

Martha Michaels, 72, and her husband Buddy, 70, raised four children together in their home in Higdon. In June of 2011, they would have been married 50 years. The couple’s son Perry was interviewed by News 19 in 2021. He said of his father, “He lived a very simple life. Working, support your family, support your church, live your life for the Lord.” Perry said his mother was always there for them. “She put her children, my dad above her wants. She wanted us to have better than what she had.”

A photo from Find A Grave of Martha and William Michaels.

The couple was in the house with one of their sons and another man. They both were injured, but Martha and Buddy did not survive. “You wonder if they suffered,” said Perry. “Even today you worry what they went through, what they felt, but I know my mother, she truly did not want to live in this life without Daddy. When it first happened, you wake up in the morning that’s the first thing you think of and it’s all day long. You lay down at night that’s on your mind. Ten years later, I still think of them.” Perry continued, “I was very blessed to have known them and have the role models that I did. Very thankful for the life that they lived in front of us and the way they helped shape us and help us get started on our path.”

The four children recovered some of their parent’s belongings, including several of their father’s bibles. “We have very few items that were theirs,” Perry said, “but the true mementos are what they give us growing up.”

Glynis Lawson remembered sheltering in her closet at her home off County Road 155 in Higdon. “Just as I shut the door, that’s when everything started,” Lawson told Channel 3 in Chattanooga a year after the tornado. “The hitting, the roar, and the house started breaking apart.” According to the news station, first responders found Glynis in a ditch under the debris once her home. They mistakenly thought she had died and placed her in a body bag. She was transported to Dade Health and Rehabilitation Center in Trenton, GA, where a temporary morgue was established.

Dana Culpepper, a nurse at the rehab center, was also interviewed by Channel 3. She said during the chaotic scene that day, she thought she heard a moan. “I was not even going to look and I heard the moan again,” Dana said. She was able to trace the sound to the make-shift morgue. With another nurse, Dana unzipped one of the body bags and found Glynis alive but barely breathing. She had a broken hip, a hole in her back, and dislocated shoulder. “Her nose was gone,” Culpepper said. “Her ear was off, and I don’t know how she was living.” The nurses jumped into action and tried to stop the bleeding and started an IV.

After several surgeries, Glynis was able to recover from her injuries. She believes God kept her on this earth to care for her ailing father, who had been suffering from dementia. He was a patient at the same rehab center that Glynis was transported to. She spent six more months with him before he passed away in December 2011. Per the Channel 3 interview, Glynis returns to the rehab center every week to visit the people who saved her life. And when severe weather strikes, she drives there as well for shelter.

In the one-and-a-quarter-mile stretch of track from County Road 169 to the Alabama/Georgia state border, 14 dwellings were destroyed. The destruction was much the same as in prior locations hit. Groves of trees were leveled, and countless debris impact markings were sliced into the ground. A van was rolled 80-100 yards to the northwest where the twister crossed County Road 155 one last time, with a couple of other vehicles also blown about. The final damage in Alabama occurred on Whetzel Road. Two chicken homes were leveled, a house was reduced to interior walls, and a manufactured residence dashed into a grove 40 yards from its initial location.

An aerial view of where the twister crossed County Road 155 for a final time. Image from the Civil Air Patrol.

Just past 4:35 pm CST, the tornado crossed from DeKalb County, Alabama, into western Dade County, Georgia, 4.5 miles SW of Trenton. Two houses were immediately razed on County Road 267. One of these, a large, 1.5-story structure, was swept clean from its foundation with the debris scattered across the road. A half mile to the east at Sand Mountain Bible Camp on Bible Camp Lane, the large, steel-framed Dr. Lee Roberson Tabernacle was wiped to the slab with portions of the skeleton over 150 yards downwind. According to a September 24, 2011 article in the Chattanooga Times Free Press, six or seven other structures at the camp were destroyed, with the Small Business Administration estimating a cost of $2.3 million.

Two homes swept away just across the state border into Georgia along County Road 267. Image from NWS Peachtree City.

On County Road 189 and GA-301, a total of 11 dwellings and two businesses were lost. Brown’s Tire Pros became a mass of twisted metal, with semi-trailers tossed roughly 50 yards and other vehicles displaced.

We talked with Phillip Richard Brown, owner of Brown’s Tire Pros, about his experience that day. His parents lived across the street from the shop. Phillip and six others sheltered in a hallway while the tornado tore the home around them. The house had tremendous damage, but they were able to rebuild, and everyone survived.

Phillip said that during the recovery period, they set up a tire-changing station outside of the destroyed shop. Daniel’s Tree Service, who worked with FEMA, often stopped to replace blown-out tires punctured by debris in the area. Brown’s Tire Pros were able to rebuild and were back in business within six months.

A tilted view of the path looking downwind, with the remains of Brown’s Tire Pros in the foreground. NOAA Remote Sensing Division aerial imagery taken May 4, 2011, and Google Earth imagery taken September 29, 2009.

At approximately 4:40 pm CST, the tornado entered heavily populated portions of southern Trenton. There were 21 residential structures destroyed in the vicinity of South Main Street and Walnut Avenue. This included one two-story and six single-story buildings at Village Green Apartments, all of which were stripped down to a varying number of walls. A few vehicles were flipped, battered by debris, or shifted around. Five businesses were also destroyed in the heart of Trenton. Moore Funeral Home, S&L Tans, and Blossman Gas partially collapsed, while the identities of the last two are unknown. In addition, the Georgia Forestry Commission Dade Unit was bruised beyond repair. Substantial loss of roofing occurred to Ryan Funeral Home, Business Center of Trenton, a retail shopping center, and Trenton First Baptist Church.

A labeled view of locations mentioned in Trenton. Image created using Google Earth and NOAA Remote Sensing Division aerial imagery taken May 4, 2011.
General destruction in Trenton. The spray painted message on the residence at center reads, “I thought it was just a train.” Image taken by a NWS survey team and exclusively provided by Chris Darden.

“I’m still in shock, running on adrenaline. I didn’t expect it to do the amount of damage it did.” That is a quote from Jacob Taylor in an April 29, 2011, article in The Chattanooga Times Free Press. He and his roommate, Andy Page, lived in a second-floor unit at Village Green Apartments. They rode out the tornado in a closet, holding onto the water heater. “All you could hear was the roar – you couldn’t even hear the walls being blown away,” Jacob said. “It was over in 5 seconds. All that was left was the carpet on the floor.” The roommates lost everything they owned, but neither were injured. The men began a frantic search for their cats. After a few hours, Andy’s cat of three years, Ellie, came out of her hiding place and into her owner’s arms.

Lisa Rice had opened S&L Tans on Main Street only three weeks before the tornado. She was at her business with her daughters, Sky and Stormy. In an interview with the Associated Press on April 29, 2011, Lisa said she already had a plan if the family had to shelter at the salon. “If something happens then we’re going into the room with the green tanning bed.” She continued, “It got real dark and things started flying around and I asked my youngest daughter, ‘Does it sound like a train?’ and she said ‘Yeah’ and I said ‘Go, go, go, go, go.’” Lisa and the girls jumped inside the green tanning bed and pulled down the lid.

Rice explained that as they lay in the bed, they could hear the winds ripping away the salon. As things calmed, she called her husband to tell him they were safe. They slowly lifted the lid of the tanning bed and walked out the back of what was left of the building. Lisa’s story appeared in an April 28, 2011, article at Time.com. “The whole time we were in there, we were just praising God,” she said. “Just, ‘Hold us and keep us tight.’ And we’re alive. There’s a lot of people that’s lost their homes here. We can rebuild if we want to or relocate, but there’s a lot of people that lost their homes and their lives.”

Moore Funeral Home had been in Trenton since 1955 and, only two years prior to the tornado, had gone through a remodel. Larry Moore, the owner, was in the basement of his home with his family when the tornado screamed through Trenton. They heard on the scanner about the devastation on Main Street. “A friend called us and told us that the building was not there,” said Larry in a Dade County Sentinel article on April 22, 2021. His wife Mary continued, “It was an unreal feeling to see what the damage was. Everything was damaged at the funeral home. One of the buses from Trenton First Baptist landed in our parking lot.” The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette compiled an article from wire reports on April 29, 2011. They shared a story of survival in the funeral home’s basement. The woman who cleaned the business sheltered there with her two children. “That’s what saved her, I guess. It was over in just a matter of seconds. She called 911 and emergency crews had to help her get out,” said Larry. “Her dinner was still sitting on the cafeteria table when we got here today.”

Per the Moore Funeral Home website, Larry decided to rebuild at the same location. “He operated the business out of a temporary trailer while the new building was constructed. He embalmed at his funeral home in Bryant, AL and held funeral services in local churches. The current funeral home was completed in July 2012 and serves families today.”

An aerial view of the damage, with Moore Funeral Home visible at top in the parking lot. Image from NWS Peachtree City.

There were two fatalities in the vicinity of Main Street. Donnie Walston, 47, was killed when his trailer near Blossman Gas was struck. His girlfriend was hospitalized with injuries. Per an April 30, 2011 article on chattanoogan.com, the frame of Donnie’s trailer landed in the yard of a relative of the second victim, 49-year-old Jerry Williams, Sr. Only a block away, Mr. Williams lost his life in the demolished Village Green Apartments. His son told The Chattanooga Times Free Press in an April 28, 2012 article that his father “loved fishing, raising chickens and working on trucks.”

A view of the Village Green Apartments where Jerry Williams Sr. lost his life. Image taken by a NWS survey team and exclusively provided by Chris Darden.

Several dozen dwellings were damaged and 13 destroyed from Lafayette Street to Glenview Drive, with the latter where most of the homes were located. Some lost roofs, exterior walls, or were shifted off their foundation.

Per a July 8, 2011 article with Local 3 News, approximately 70% of Trenton’s low-income housing was affected by the tornado. At the time of this piece, many of these residents were either living with family or in temporary accommodations, and rebuilding was slow to come or not at all. The owner of Village Green Apartments, which had 25 units, decided not to reconstruct. Edgewood Townhomes off Main Street saw $75,000 in damage, with about half of the units remaining liveable. The 24 units at Mountain View Apartments off Glenview Drive had to be rebuilt. One resident there, Sharon Spurgeon, was interviewed in a July 7, 2011, article in The Chattanooga Times Free Press. She, like many residents displaced, was anxious to return. “We are homesick,” Sharon said. “It was home to us and we want to come back.”

A year after the tornado, a memorial was dedicated in Trenton. It contains the names of Donnie Walston and Jerry Williams, Sr. Relatives of both men were there to help unveil the memorial. “It’s a day we’ll always remember, but it’s a day I hope we’ll never go through again,” said Ted Rumley, Dade County executive, during the ceremony. “Everyone will always remember where they were that night.”

The tornado exited Trenton proper for more rural land on an east-northeast course at the bottom of Lookout Valley. It crossed Lookout Creek and Piney Road. While many homesteads lost shingles and a couple of outbuildings were flattened, only one house was irreparable. After this point, the vortex scaled Lookout Mountain head-on. This topographical feature is actually an extension of the Cumberland Plateau, albeit far narrower in width than the previously discussed Sand Mountain. The 800-yard (0.45 mile) wide twister swept up the bluff, ascending from 700 to 1,970 feet above sea level in just over a mile. Some damage may have been done to the Live A Little Chatt hotel, which was perched atop the crest. A large area of trees was flattened, creating a scar in the ridge’s canopy that was visible from many miles away. The video below best shows the steep cliff face at around the 3:30 minute mark.

The tornadic scar cut up Lookout Mountain, as seen from over three miles away in Trenton. Photo from Georgia Emergency Management Agency and taken by Sheri Russio.

“Lula Lake Road looked like a bomb had gone off.” That is Lori Atkins Carter in an April 27, 2016, article in the Walker County Messenger/The Catoosa County News. She sheltered in the basement of her Hinkle home with her children. “When it finally hit, you could feel a woosh, like a vacuum pulling at you. Everything went dark.” She also told the paper that “the noise of debris hitting the house sounded like gunshots.” The destruction across this community was widespread. Lori noted how everyone came together to help one another. “I feel a special connection with my neighbors and community that I don’t think I would have felt if not for the tornadoes,” Lori said. “I never want it to happen again. It was awful. But it also brought out the best in people.”

The destruction off of Lula Lake Road. NOAA Remote Sensing Division aerial imagery taken May 4, 2011, and Google Earth imagery taken September 29, 2009.

Forest was completely flattened over Rock Creek and up a brief 300-foot ridge on its eastern bank. In just a half mile, it plummeted roughly 850 feet in elevation off of the eastern flank of Lookout Mountain. For 720 yards and 30 seconds, the ground-level circulation completely vanished. Only a few very isolated trees (which could have even been from the morning storms and not this one) were downed uniformly to the southeast by Rear Flank Downdraft (RFD).

It is necessary to explain that the influence certain topographical features can have on tornadoes is not a simple cause and effect. In fact, it can wildly vary depending on the situation. The twister had already descended a downslope equal to this three times before, including moments after birth and at the point of maximum intensity. In all of those cases, it became temporarily stronger. From an academic viewpoint, the greatest difference now was that circulation had been very gradually decaying since even before hitting Trenton. Also, another mesocyclone was already beginning to replace the current one aloft, ensuring its true demise less than seven miles downwind.

One universal quality of all four major downslope interactions was that there were no real permanent effects. Tornadic winds at ground level recommenced 1.6 miles SW of Chattanooga Valley. Trees were uprooted across Nick-A-Jack Road, and a few seconds later, more vigorously snapped through Aaron Drive.

Just one mile after rebirth, the tornado produced its worst damage since striking Trenton. Mountain View and Eagle Landing Drives were the hardest hit, with a total of 14 houses destroyed in these neighborhoods. Many were pockmarked by flying debris, with one reduced to a few interior walls.

The path across Mountain View and Eagle Landing Drives. Image created using Google Earth and NOAA Remote Sensing Division aerial imagery taken May 4, 2011.

Yet another house on Chickamauga Road was left with only some walls before the vortex began to wane. While a number of dwellings lost varying degrees of roofing, none of them were irreparable. Most trees in the direct path were still snapped or uprooted until Mission Ridge Road in the community of Fairview. After that point, tree damage was more spotty. Two trailers and a home were demolished in the wake of the tornado. It’s not clear if this was due to the Flat Rock-Trenton twister or the result of a few undocumented morning tornado tracks that crossed paths with the main afternoon one. Regardless, the twister continued to weaken and curved northeastward across State Highway 27 with a width of 190 yards (0.11 miles). Dissipation finally took place at 5:00 pm CST about 0.9 miles NW of Fort Oglethorpe. At last, the 44.86 mile and over 54-minute path of destruction was over.

The diminishing swath of damage cut by the tornado as it wound deeper into Walker County. Image created using Google Earth and NOAA Remote Sensing Division aerial imagery taken May 4, 2011.
Some of the last tornadic treefall just before dissipation. This is located off of State Highway 27 near Fort Oglethorpe. Image created using Google Earth imagery taken January 23, 2012.

In total, 130 site-built houses, 92 manufactured homes, 13 business structures, 11 chicken houses, and 1 church were destroyed. Hundreds of outbuildings were irreparable. We did not do a precise count, but somewhere in the ballpark of 600 properties may have had some form of damage. Fourteen lives were lost. The injury count on the Georgia side was 50, with the number hurt in Alabama uncounted. Based on what information is known, the total number for both states is put at a rather conservative 125. Across the entire path, we estimated somewhere around $55 million in monetary costs.

Relief and recovery efforts began immediately across this rural area of northeast Alabama and northwest Georgia. Local fire departments not only helped police with search and rescue efforts after the tornado but brought chainsaws to help clear trees and debris days and weeks after. Volunteers from the community and churches flooded the area for months to help recover.

Per an article from July 21, 2011, in the Jackson County Sentinel, a long-term recovery committee was created to help in the aftermath. “The all-volunteer Committee, consisting of the Sand Mountain Baptist Association, The Upper Sand Mountain Parrish, DeKalb Baptist Association, Jackson and DeKalb Salvation Army, Jackson and DeKalb Red Cross and emergency management agencies in both counties, is committed to restoring lives of those impacted by the storms. Other community agencies and local churches and pastors are involved in the effort.” Three months after the event, the rebuilding of the first residence in Flat Rock began. “This is just the first of many homes that we are helping to rebuild,” David Patty, the group’s chairman, said. “We have several repair jobs ongoing but this is the first rebuild project.”

Local radio personality, Bobby Bishop, got to work just days after the tornado. He did remote broadcasts throughout Sand Mountain, providing information on where to find food, shelter, and supplies. “It seemed our little corner of Alabama received no attention, though our people were hurting just as much as everyone else,” said Bishop in a September 1, 2011 article with the Jackson County Sentinel. Bobby also started planning a benefit concert, with all proceeds split between the affected communities in Jackson and DeKalb Counties.

Farmers Telecommunications Cooperative, Inc. summed up the response to the tornadoes in Jackson and DeKalb counties perfectly in their publication from May/June 2011. This sentiment can be extended to the hard-hit areas across the state line into Georgia and truly for all communities hard hit during the Super Outbreak of April 25-28, 2011. “Until a package has been torn open, it is almost impossible to know what it really contains. The same can be said for communities and counties. When disaster strikes and they are torn open, what they are truly made of is laid bare for all to see. Alabamians can be proud of what others saw take place in Jackson and DeKalb counties in the days following April 27, 2011. In the midst of their grief and pain, the people of both counties displayed remarkable strength, courage and compassion for one another. A sense of brotherhood and cooperation spread across every sector of society. Emergency personnel, law enforcement and government officials worked alongside volunteers from churches, relief organizations, and even local jail inmates to bring aid to the injured and support to every person in need.”

In Loving Memory

Alabama

In Higdon:
Chelsie Black, 20
Linda Boatner, 67
Jewell Ewing, 73
Martha Michaels, 72
William “Buddy” Michaels, 70
Terry Tinker, 50

In Pisgah:
Kathy Gray Haney, 46
Ann Satterfield, 81
Herbert Satterfield, 90

In Flat Rock:
Janey Shannon, 80
Shelby Shannon, 58
Kathyrn Whited, 75
John Whited, 77
Inez Bright, 88 – Indirect
Wayne and Judith White – Died in a fire started from a generator a day after the tornado

Georgia

In Trenton:
Donnie Walston, 47
Jerry Williams, Sr., 49

Discrepancies:

We gathered information for this event from the Storm Prediction Center (SPC) and National Climatic Data Center (NCDC) databases, as well as the April 2011 Storm Data Publication (SDP), the NWS Huntsville and Peachtree City event summary pages, the Damage Assessment Toolkit (DAT), and our own detailed analysis of all reliable imagery and information channels and found the following differences:

Path Length:

    • The SPC/NCDC/SDP list a path length of 46.98 miles.
    • Extremely detailed analysis of the damage indicates a total track length, accounting for all twists and turns, of 44.86 miles. This includes a start point 2.6 miles NE of the official beginning coordinates, and an end 0.4 miles NNW of the official point.

    Path Width:

    • The SPC/NCDC/SDP give a maximum width of 1,260 yards (0.72 miles).
    • The NWS Huntsville Event Summary Page and the Damage Assessment Toolkit list a maximum width of 1,760 yards (1.00 miles)..
    • Extremely detailed analysis of the damage found a maximum width in unpopulated areas of 2,430 yards (1.38 miles).

    Fatalities:

      • All official sources list a total of 14 direct fatalities and 0 indirect.
      • Our own look into the event found three further indirect deaths that can be confidently attributed to the twister. Inez Bright of Flat Rock died a couple of weeks after the event. Per a grandson of the 88-year-old woman, Larry Smith, “the stress of seeing the community where she lived her entire life destroyed was too much for her.” Wayne and Judith Bright, also of Flat Rock, died in a generator fire a day after the tornado struck. This gives a direct and indirect death toll of 17.

    Injuries:

    • In NCDC and SDP entries, the NWS Peachtree City logged 25 injuries apiece for Dade and Walker Counties in Georgia.
    • No injuries were officially transcribed for Jackson and DeKalb Counties in Alabama.
    • Based on what information is known, we put the total number for both states at a rather conservative estimate of 125, or 75 for the Alabama side. 

    Monetary Cost:

    • The NWS Peachtree City estimated $20 million in costs for Dade County, and $5 million for Walker County. It is unknown whether this includes insured losses as well as uninsured.
    • No damage costs were officially documented for Jackson and DeKalb Counties in Alabama.
    • Based on what information is known, we came up with a rough damage estimate across the entire path of $55 million. This puts the Alabama portion at $30 million. 

      Sources:

      Storm Prediction Center

      April 2011 Storm Data Publication

      Damage Assessment Toolkit

      NCDC Storm Events Database Entry-AM Tornado-Jackson County (AL)

      NCDC Storm Events Database Entry-AM Tornado-Dekalb County (AL)

      NCDC Storm Events Database Entry-PM Tornado-Jackson County (AL)

      NCDC Storm Events Database Entry-PM Tornado-DeKalb County (AL)

      NCDC Storm Events Database Entry-PM Tornado-Dade County (GA)

      NCDC Storm Events Database Entry-PM Tornado-Walker County (GA)

      NWS Huntsville Event Page

      NWS Peachtree City Event Page

      Google Earth

      Google Maps

      USGS

      NOAA Emergency Response Imagery

      DeKalb County Parcel Viewer

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      Dade County Parcel Viewer

      Georgia Emergency Management Agency

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      Press, The Associated. 2011. “Alabama Family Struck Twice by Deadly Tornadoes; ‘It Came Back … And It Killed More.’” Al. May 1, 2011. https://www.al.com/wire/2011/05/alabama_family_struck_twice_by.html

      “PressReader.com – Digital Newspaper & Magazine Subscriptions.” n.d. Www.pressreader.com. https://www.pressreader.com/usa/chattanooga-times-free-press/20120428/282948152236993

      Report, S 2012, ‘Moore Funeral Home plans grand reopening Sunday’, Chattanooga Times Free Press (TN), 28 Jul, p. 18, (online NewsBank).

      Rogers, Lisa. n.d. “Disaster Team Helps Deal with Mass Fatalities in DeKalb County.” Gadsden Times. https://www.gadsdentimes.com/story/news/local/2011/04/29/disaster-team-helps-deal-with-mass-fatalities-in-dekalb-county/32149941007/

      “Sand Mountain Facility Damaged by April Tornado | Chattanooga Times Free Press.” 2011. Www.timesfreepress.com. September 24, 2011. https://www.timesfreepress.com/news/news/story/2011/sep/24/sand-mountain-faciity-damaged-april-tornado/59838/

      “Spared by God: Tornado Victim Found Alive in Body Bag.” n.d. Crosswalk.com. https://www.crosswalk.com/video/spared-by-god-tornado-victim-found-alive-in-body-bag.html

      Starnes, Callie. n.d. “Tornado Victim Found Alive in Body Bag.” Local3News.com. https://www.local3news.com/tornado-victim-found-alive-in-body-bag/article_e590742c-b95e-5aff-a164-7d7f5ce1fa50.html

      “The Times-Tribune 02 May 2011, Page B10.” n.d. Newspapers.com. https://www.newspapers.com/image/536205311/?terms=pisgah%20tornado&match=1

      “Tornado Recovery Slow in Rural Alabama | Chattanooga Times Free Press.” 2011. Www.timesfreepress.com. May 15, 2011. https://www.timesfreepress.com/news/news/story/2011/may/15/tornado-recovery-slow-rural-alabama/49739/

      “Tornado Relief Trip – Restoring and Rebuilding in Alabama.” n.d. First Presbyterian Church. https://firstpresaugusta.org/tornado-relief-trip-restoring-and-rebuilding-in-alabama/

      “Trenton and Dade County: 2 Killed | Chattanooga Times Free Press.” 2011. Www.timesfreepress.com. April 29, 2011. https://www.timesfreepress.com/news/news/story/2011/apr/29/trenton-and-dade-county-2-killed/48518/

      “Trenton Has Heavy Storm Damage. At Least 2 Killed.” 2011. Www.chattanoogan.com. April 27, 2011. https://www.chattanoogan.com/2011/4/27/199934/Trenton-Has-Heavy-Storm-Damage.-At.aspx.

      US Department of Commerce, NOAA. n.d. “Memorial: April 27th, 2011 Tornado Victims.” Www.weather.gov. https://www.weather.gov/hun/hunsur_2011-04-27_memorial

      “‘We All Lost so Much’ | Chattanooga Times Free Press.” 2011. Www.timesfreepress.com. June 26, 2011. https://www.timesfreepress.com/news/news/story/2011/jun/26/we-all-lost-so-much/52740/

      “‘We’re Alive’: Survivors Recount Deadly Tornadoes.” n.d. NBC News. https://www.nbcnews.com/id/wbna42800424

      William Carroll ‘Buddy’ Michaels (1941-2011) -…” n.d. Www.findagrave.com. https://www.findagrave.com/memorial/69338631/william-carroll-michaels

      Wolk, Tamara . n.d. “Remembering the Tornado, Five Years Later: ‘Everyone Just Came Together and Helped Each Other.’” Northwest Georgia News. https://www.northwestgeorgianews.com/catoosa_walker_news/news/remembering-the-tornado-five-years-later-everyone-just-came-together-and-helped-each-other/article_1821b2ee-0c9a-11e6-9a15-bbded390e4a2.html

      Www.arkansasonline.com. https://www.arkansasonline.com/news/2011/apr/29/tornados-path-prayers-fear-20110429/.

      Yahoo! (n.d.). Video: Tornado victim found alive in body bag recalls terrifying morgue ordeal. Yahoo! News. https://uk.news.yahoo.com/video–woman-alive-in-body-bag.html

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