EF1 tornado touched down in Lancaster County

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The National Weather Service confirms an EF1 tornado touched down in Lancaster County last week.The twister touched down in Kirkwood just after 2 p.m. Friday with winds around 105 miles per hour.When Gary Stapleton turned onto the long drive that leads to his house and saw the damage the tornado caused, his heart sank. “Disaster,” he said. His beloved magnolias and weeping cherries – which he planted himself – were all gone. “And all the pines up along the road we planted,” he said.The canopy of trees behind his house was so dense that the sun’s light couldn’t shine through. Now it’s a wide-open space. “Just good trees,” Stapleton said.The cleanup process seemed overwhelming. “Then all of a sudden an Amish neighbor shows up and said, ‘Do you want some help? Because we’re doing the farm across the street,'” Stapleton said. He accepted.”We had, say, 6- and 7-year-olds, all the way up to people in their 60s. Plus old people like me,” Stapleton said. He said our country is going through a tough time right now, but the goodness he saw was like a bright cloud in a gray sky. “When I saw these people coming, tears come to your eyes,” he said.Although the tornado traveled right through his property, his house wasn’t touched. He said he’s very grateful for that.He hopes to have everything cleaned up in the next few weeks.

The National Weather Service confirms an EF1 tornado touched down in Lancaster County last week.

The twister touched down in Kirkwood just after 2 p.m. Friday with winds around 105 miles per hour.

When Gary Stapleton turned onto the long drive that leads to his house and saw the damage the tornado caused, his heart sank.

“Disaster,” he said.

His beloved magnolias and weeping cherries – which he planted himself – were all gone.

“And all the pines up along the road we planted,” he said.

The canopy of trees behind his house was so dense that the sun’s light couldn’t shine through. Now it’s a wide-open space.

“Just good trees,” Stapleton said.

The cleanup process seemed overwhelming.

“Then all of a sudden an Amish neighbor shows up and said, ‘Do you want some help? Because we’re doing the farm across the street,'” Stapleton said.

He accepted.

“We had, say, 6- and 7-year-olds, all the way up to people in their 60s. Plus old people like me,” Stapleton said.

He said our country is going through a tough time right now, but the goodness he saw was like a bright cloud in a gray sky.

“When I saw these people coming, tears come to your eyes,” he said.

Although the tornado traveled right through his property, his house wasn’t touched. He said he’s very grateful for that.

He hopes to have everything cleaned up in the next few weeks.

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