Custer County residents picking up after Sunday’s tornado activity
CUSTER COUNTY, S.D. — After two confirmed tornadoes ripped through Custer County, residents and emergency management are picking up the pieces.
“You could hear it, it was rumbling pretty hard like a train.”
Crews and residents have spent the day after the twin twisters to clean roads and homes of debris.
Many residents say they only saw the aftermath – but heard it loud and clear.
“The winds were pretty good, I never could see any flying debris or anything, but we could see the winds were pretty good up there,” said Leo Volin, Custer County resident.
Some areas of the county were spared; some say the only thing they experienced were strong winds, rain, and hail.
The main areas damaged were near Sydney Park and French Creek Roads, and areas near Willow Creek and Sylvan Lake – moving to America Center Road.
“We weren’t getting the trees coming down so much. But we got multiple tornado warnings, and then we were getting some hail and rain and about that time the power went out. Just looking outside, the hail seemed to be coming right at the window almost sideways,” said Custer County resident Ken Swanda.
Trees were uprooted across the area.
The Sunday weather forced one man to come up to Rapid City on Monday – he needed to get new glasses after his old ones were blown off his face.
“Nothing for injuries to people anywhere. Some loss of small out buildings and stuff, tree fell on a wood shed, couple of horse shelters were blown over. Things like that. I have heard of some roof damage to several homes,” Steve Esser, Director of Emergency Management.
There were no human injuries or deaths, but one resident lost his beloved gelding in the storm.
“We just had time to prepare ourselves in a closet, in the interior of the house, but as we went in, we looked out the window, and our livestock sheds had blown over, and our favorite gelding didn’t make it. It sounded like a freight train,” said Christopher Wood, Custer County Resident.
Counting his blessings, Wood says things could have been much worse, considering one of his friends lost their home.
As of late Monday afternoon, the National Weather Service confirmed there were four tornadoes total in Custer and Perkins Counties.