Tornado confirmed in Lamar County Friday

March 6, 2012 in News

By Monica Land

HATTIESBURG – Meteorologists are saying Friday saw at least 128 tornadoes across 12 states with 39 deaths being reported thus far. And those numbers, sources said, are likely to rise as more information comes in.

The National Weather Service also confirmed that one tornado slammed into Mississippi Friday leaving a 12-mile-long, 300-yard-wide path of destruction in Lamar County.

The twister, which has not been classified, had winds up to 100 miles an hour and started in south central Lamar County and dissipated across the Forrest County in Dixie. Nine homes were damaged, including two mobile homes that were destroyed and four other houses and mobile homes with major damage.

No injuries were reported.

The last known reported death in Mississippi, resulting from bad weather was 53–year-old Carroll County resident Toni Hood on Feb. 1. A severe thunderstorm warning had been issued for Carroll County, and Carroll County Coroner Ken Strachan speculated that Hood was on an ATV taking trash down to the road from her home when high winds toppled a tree, which struck Hood and killed her.

High winds and funnel clouds were also spotted in Duck Hill in Montgomery County that same day.

Friday’s tornadoes, however, seemed to have spared Mississippi, which was hit hard in April 2011, but wreaked major destruction in Kentucky, Alabama and Indiana where among the deaths, five members of one family were killed.

Fifteen-month-old Angel Babcock died Sunday afternoon after her grandparents and doctors decided to remove her from life support due to the severity of her head injuries.

Angel, who lived in New Pekin, Ind, with her family, was found alone in a southern Indiana field after violent storms ravaged the area.

Authorities said Angel was found about 150 yards from where her family’s mobile home had stood.

Neighbors said they tried to get Angel’s family to leave their home for a more secure structure as the tornado bore down on the area, but instead saw the Babcocks lying face down in their hallway, holding hands and praying.

Angel’s parents, Joe and Moriah Babcock died instantly, as did her brother, 2-year-old Jaydon and 2-month-old Kendall.

Funeral services for the family were held Sunday.

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