Missouri | News | weather

Video: Deadly Tornado Obliterates Joplin, Missouri


At least 89 are confirmed dead in a devastating tornado that ripped through Joplin, Missouri on Sunday, the AP reports:

City manager Mark Rohr announced the number of known dead at a pre-dawn news conference outside the wreckage of a hospital that took a direct hit from Sunday's storm. Rohr said the twister cut a path nearly six miles long and more than a half-mile wide through the center of town.

Much of the city's south side was leveled, with churches, schools, businesses and homes reduced to ruins.

Fire chief Mitch Randles estimated that 25 to 30 percent of the city was damaged, and said his own home was among the buildings destroyed as the twister swept through this city of about 50,000 people some 160 miles south of Kansas City. "It cut the city in half," Randles said.

A set of heartbreaking, unreal videos including one shot from within the storm, 

Here's some radar from the Weather Channel:


The high-resolution radar image below shows the destructive tornado which moved through Joplin, Mo. It shows a well-defined hook echo with the lavender tornado debris ball (circled area on left image) at the base of the hook. A debris ball is the radar seeing actual debris suspended in the air by the tornado.

According to Dr. Forbes, the lavender debris signature, which marks the tornado, is just over a mile wide and extends with a tilt toward the north upward to about 18,000 feet. This indicates that substantial debris was being tossed at least that high.

Our thoughts go out to everyone affected by this deadly storm.

A set of heartbreaking, unreal videos including one shot from within the storm,

This clip was taken from inside a Fastrip convenience store. No visuals are necessary to understand what these people were going through.

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  1. While my heart goes out to these people; as they would say, you reap what you sow. God smites those who spread hate. The wrath of God is swift and strong. The south and mid-west have been spreading anti-gay, racist, and religious intolerance and hatred not just in their own states, but across the country, and even around the world (Uganda anyone?). I see this, as they would if it were an earthquake in California, as God's justice!

    Posted by: Mother(f****r) | May 23, 2011 9:17:36 AM

  2. Devastating. Total destruction. I feel sorry for those people.

    Posted by: Matt26 | May 23, 2011 9:23:55 AM

  3. We liberals dont have it in us to think that way for long...thats what makes us liberals. Now and again though Mother, I do happen to share your sentiment.

    Posted by: Jerry | May 23, 2011 9:24:47 AM

  4. Absolutely devastating. The intensity and duration of the twister is at the top level of destructive capabilities. It's luck if people survive
    a storm like this. Basements don't offer much protection. It ripped the bark off the trees. My heart goes out to all those in Joplin affected by this storm.

    Posted by: kodiak | May 23, 2011 9:28:11 AM

  5. AMEN "Mother" AMEN!

    Posted by: CB | May 23, 2011 9:41:18 AM

  6. Once again I can rely on Towleroad commenters to provide the most hateful statements I'll hear all day.

    Obviously your heart does not go out to them.

    Posted by: Dean | May 23, 2011 9:51:59 AM

  7. Your sweeping generalization of the South and Midwest is childish. It may provide some comic relief, but you fail to realize there are still progessive thinkers in those areas. There are also LGBT men, women, and children that like living there or just haven't had the opportunity to get out yet.

    Posted by: TyN | May 23, 2011 9:53:44 AM

  8. I'm disgusted that people would agree with Mother. You're no better than the WBC. Well done, homos!

    Posted by: D.R.H. | May 23, 2011 10:04:49 AM

  9. I am a liberal gay man from Missouri. Enough said.

    Posted by: william | May 23, 2011 10:20:46 AM

  10. Really, Mother? What about the tornado that just destroyed major parts of North Minneapolis yesterday afternoon. I know several people that live in the area and NONE of them are racist, homophobic bigots but friends and family members who were just trying to get by and who will vote resoundingly NO on the stupid marriage amendment this November. Maybe god was after the old man who was killed at the corner of 36th and Fremont when a tree went through his van window. I agree that such talk is no better than the vile hatred of the WBC. And anyone who can watch that Fastrip Convenience Store video and not feel anything but terror and pity for the poor souls trapped is not even HUMAN in my book. Notice that the people in there are talking about nothing but love when the tornado hits. Love for what seems to be total strangers. I am praying for them all. And if I happen to pray for the worst bigot on the face of the earth, then so be it. No one deserves the destruction of tornadoes, no matter what their political stance.

    Posted by: AJ | May 23, 2011 10:25:59 AM

  11. Luckily for Mother, there's no anti-gay h8 in Los Angeles, San Francisco and Manhattan, otherwise his rant would be a lie.

    Oh, wait....

    "A debris ball is the radar seeing actual debris suspended in the air by the tornado"


    Those storm chasers are crazy, but that's some amazing footage.

    Posted by: Henry Holland | May 23, 2011 10:26:36 AM

  12. Love and Prayers to the People of Joplin, Missouri! This is heartbreaking... and also terrifying... one of these tornadoes could hit any of us! This must be signs of climate change... what will it take for us to wake up and respond to these severe signs???

    Posted by: james Brown | May 23, 2011 10:31:47 AM

  13. Well done Mother...you join the bigot pigs and morons of the world.

    Posted by: Bear | May 23, 2011 10:32:03 AM

  14. The video in the convenience store is truly terrifying. I don't agree with the first comment or any others that imply someone deserves the wrath of nature because I think it is completely random. However, as an atheist, I am always perplexed by people who pray to Jesus and the Heavenly Father to protect them from the tornado because according to their own believe system, the God that they are praying to for salvation from the storm is the same God that sent the storm in the first place.

    Don't get me wrong, I feel bad for these people and hope that they are able to rise from the destruction as better people, I just don't understand the inconsistencies of their religion.

    Posted by: Chadd | May 23, 2011 10:51:03 AM

  15. @CHADD: It's not inconsistent if you have faith. Your own personal spiritual beliefs (no matter what they are) come slamming into full focus in situations like this. Many believe that God is testing them when something like this happens and they are praying for His help but also begging Him to spare them. It makes no sense to a true Atheist, but its something to hold onto in times of such terror when the building around you is crumbling to pieces. It may not seem like much to some people, but it was everything for that woman.

    Posted by: AJ | May 23, 2011 10:56:30 AM

  16. @MotherF*** your ignorance is about as slimy and disgusting as it gets. You know nothing about this city, these people, and you write such a hateful and vile posting. May you reap what you sow, brother. But being you must be enough punishment.

    Posted by: Bart | May 23, 2011 12:59:48 PM

  17. Mother, as much as I would like to agree I can't. Throwing generalizations out like that is exactly the same kind of behavior that is directed at the GLTBQ community. "They're gay so they must be pedophile sodomite drug users.

    89 people lost their lives.

    Posted by: jakeinlove | May 23, 2011 1:01:28 PM

  18. Imagine no religion.

    Posted by: Andalusian Dog | May 23, 2011 1:19:42 PM

  19. the gods r tea-party pissed!!

    Posted by: ACe | May 23, 2011 2:22:03 PM

  20. this isn't the forum for anti-religion talk. thousands of people have just had their lives, homes, etc.. wiped away by a natural disaster.
    Take a second out of your need to say "I told you so" and show some compassion.
    and to the ass who said "well done homo's" as if we are ALL hatefull?...seriously you want to throw us all together in one pile? like Mother has done to everyone in Joplin and the south? Stupidity knows no bounds.
    My sympathies go out to everyone who was affected by this tragedy.

    Posted by: john | May 23, 2011 2:30:37 PM

  21. My feeling is that Mother posted the comment as irony to show us that chances are good someone elsewhere on a different site posted a similar comment saying that gays were the cause of all this destruction and death, and not to cause such ire to all here.

    Incidentally, heart out to Joplin.

    Posted by: Christopher | May 23, 2011 2:51:45 PM

  22. Last video (3 minutes) was removed by the user.

    Posted by: Randy | May 23, 2011 4:02:53 PM

  23. One of my oldest friends in the world lives in Joplin, and missed the tornado by about a mile.... so needless to say, Mother, I find your comments not just in bad taste, but outrageous and unacceptable.

    Posted by: Ryan | May 23, 2011 4:39:42 PM

  24. It's not the wrath of God, it's the wrath of nature, Mother. There's no difference between what you said, and the folks who say everything's the fault of the gays.

    Those poor people. This Oklahoman is sending prayers to them, and a check to the Red Cross.

    Posted by: The Milkman | May 23, 2011 6:04:38 PM

  25. Why Freedom from Homosexuality is Important:

    In a blind Survey, 73% of Homosexual Men confessed that they were sexually attracted to young males and boys.

    God Sent Tornado After Lutherans Endorse Homosexuality

    It is NOT an Accident that these cities getting devastated by these natural disasters had a high Homosexual activity or had churches and religious people who had accepted the perversion as normal.

    Posted by: PLYMOUTH | May 23, 2011 7:01:33 PM

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