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Report: Tornado in Rockingham Co. leaves severe damage

First responders found downed trees, blocked roadways, powerlines down, and trees on houses.

ROCKINGHAM COUNTY, N.C. — A tornado ripped through Rockingham County Friday.

County officials said a tornado warning went into effect around 7:20 p.m. Communications got the first calls about damage about 22 minutes later.

Saturday afternoon, the depths of the destruction left behind were clear on Sunset View Road. Trees and power lines were snapped like twigs.

Neighbors were taking stock of the damage in the Wentworth area. The wind left its mark.

The Rockingham County Department of Emergency Services said Saturday was a very productive day for debris removal and said crews gained access to damaged areas.

Some homes were smashed. One on Wentworth Street was hit by a large tree. The woman who lives there told WFMY News 2's Grace Holland she thought it was a total loss.

Another on County Home Road was also badly damaged when a tree fell onto the back. Those inside plus pets were ok.

First responders were sent to the reported areas Friday night and they found downed trees, blocked roadways, powerlines down, and trees on houses, according to Rockingham officials. 

Officials searched after the storm passed, and no one appears to have been injured. 

Credit: WFMY News 2
Tornado damage reported in Rockingham Co.

Daniel LaDrew wasn't home when the storm came through but his father-in-law and one-year-old son were.

"He got in his truck as soon as it was coming through new and drove straight through it," LaDrew said.

The family escaped the storm's wrath but road closures kept him from checking on the house or their pets until morning. His power is expected to be out until midweek.

"I'm still trying to figure out what's missing or what's broken or damaged," LaDrew said.

Stephen Schumborg, who lives on County Home Road was among those starting the cleanup process Friday morning.

He and his neighbor worked to clear a tree from the driveway. Both saw the tornado.

"I literally felt the floor rising in the house and said please just let this pass by," Schumborg said.

His home saw only minor damage.

Rockingham County Emergency Management established an area command at the Whitcomb Student Center at Rockingham Community College during the storm.

Anyone who experienced damage to their home and needs sheltering assistance should contact the American Red Cross and Rockingham County Health and Human Services.

If anyone needs assistance or shelter, they should contact Rockingham County Emergency Communications at (336) 634-3300.

Emergency officials said Baptist Men and Samaritan's Purse will open a temporary office Monday at a.m. at Calvary Church at 7860 NC 67 in Reidsville.

Officials said the two groups can help homeowners with clearing debris.

The Reidsville YMCA will offer showers to those in need during normal business hours but will need to bring their own towels and bath cloths.

Further damage assessments will start Monday morning.

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