EF1 hits Law. Co.

Ryan Squibb

Not much good is left of the old barn at Martini Land and Livestock just south of Aurora, following last week’s tornado that removed most of its second story. Ranch manager Jake Hancock wasn’t exactly sure what is to become of the building, but said if it’s a total loss it would likely be torn down for pen space.

Remnants of the barn are strewn on its east side, its profile profoundly changed. (Photos by Ryan Squibb)

Tornado sends barn aloft, trees down for miles south of Aurora, Monett, no injuries reported
No injuries were reported following an EF1 tornado, confirmed by the National Weather Service, that made an 11-mile path from Monett to Aurora the afternoon of Wednesday, May 8. The twister hit initially at 4:25 p.m. southeast of Monett, containing winds of around 95 miles per hour, then headed east toward Aurora.
The cyclone struck Aurora approximately one half mile south of U.S. Highway 60, leaving a trail of destruction along Lawrence County 2230, including hundreds of trees snapped, uprooted or both. The county road was thick with electric company trucks trying to restore power the following day, as skid steers and tree trimming rigs were also vying for road space.
Possibly the worst hit structure was a barn on the Martini Land and Livestock operation, at the southeast corner of the intersection of Lawrence County 2230 and Lawrence County 1180.
Ranch manager Jake Hancock wasn’t on site when the storm hit, and fortunately neither were the owners, Chris and Monique Hanneken, when their house was inundated with toppled trees. While the home was spared, the barn was mostly strewn across the ground, only its north side left unharmed. The barn, which had once been partially burned and then restored is probably from the late 1800s, estimated Hancock, who added that it had most recently been used for storage. No animals were inside during the weather event.
“I had some heifers right up here close that ended up getting trapped in between a bunch of trees and they all made it out unscratched, thankfully,” Hancock said. “And the cows were far enough back that they stayed out of it too.”
Beyond the barn though, there was plenty of damage of the natural variety.
“On the north half of the property it seems about 90 percent of (the trees) that’s laid flat,” said Hancock of the destruction to the 200-plus acre farm. “We’re just happy nobody got hurt, no animals got hurt. It honestly could be a lot worse. I see those people in Oklahoma that’s just got foundations left of their home.”
2018 Aurora tornado
In December of 2018, another EF1 tornado—this one deadly—struck just a half mile north of last week’s twister. Jeremy Lewis, of Crane was staying in the Aurora Inn Motel and  was killed when the back wall of the structure was torn off, leaving him dead inside the second-story room.


Lawrence County Record

312 S. Hickory St.
Mt. Vernon, MO, 65712


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