BARNESVILLE -A garage now lacking a door, a roof and a back wall and a nearby barn moved 3 inches from its foundation are among the problems resulting from high winds Sunday evening in the Barnesville area, but at least one property owner has maintained a positive attitude.
Tim Rockwell whose garage might have to be replaced as it now has no door, no roof and no back wall, noted Tuesday, "At least, nobody was hurt. Those things can be replaced."
Rockwell and his wife, Tracy, sought refuge in their basement Sunday when they begin to see and to feel the effects of the winds severely damaging their property, located on Sandy Ridge Road near the Rockwell Orchards.
ABOVE: This building on property owned by Tim and Tracy Rockwell on Sandy Ridge Road near Barnesville appears to have gone through a catastrophe, but it looked even more disastrous earlier this week after damaging winds removed its door, roof and back wall. A barn about a quarter of a mile away was moved 3 inches from its foundation.
The Barnesville area man said the damages looked more disastrous Monday, but they still look bad. Rockwell, who heads the Barnesville Pumpkin Festival, added, "It (the damaged building) looks a lot better today (Tuesday) than it did yesterday."
Rockwell, who described the structure as a 40 by 60 pole building, said he had removed some tools from the structure Monday.
He thinks the damages were caused by a tornado. Some other reliable persons think they saw a funnel cloud during the problems Sunday evening, according to Village Administrator Roger Deal.
"It was like a tornado jumping up and down," said Rockwell, who added there was not even a broken window at his parents' house about 100 yards away from his property. However, just beyond his parents' home, a barn used by the Olney Friends School sustained damages. Rockwell estimated it is about a quarter of a mile down the road from his property.
Deal said the winds carried tresses from Rockwell's building and littered them along Sandy Ridge Road toward Pigeon Point.
About half of one side of the roof is gone from a barn used by the Olney Friends School near Rockwell's property, and some of the rafters are gone. The whole building was moved on its foundation about 3 inches. The barn used for the storage of hay and equipment is on 300 acres leased by the school and controlled by the Ohio Yearly Meeting, according to Charles Szumilas, head of the Olney Friends School.
School officials don't know if the barn will be usable and are waiting for an insurance adjuster to check it over.
"It's an old barn," said Szumilas. "I'm not sure what the insurance settlement will be."
The head of school added that he had walked through the barn, and it's not a safe structure to be in.
Szumilas lives about a quarter of a mile away from the barn, and he said that on Sunday, there was a "serious burst of fierce wind blowing the trees every which way."
He went on to say that an eyewitness told Rockwell about a "funnel cloud hopping from hilltop to hilltop." Mentioning the down-swirling winds, Szumilas said they appeared to have bounced and "seemed to land over near our barn."
The barn is on the former L.J. Taber farm, and Taber, now deceased, had been a partner with the late Ray Palmer at the Barnesville Enterprise. Taber also served as master of the National Grange for many years.
Rockwell is not alone in noting how the winds damaged properties only in certain areas. Village Administrator Deal pointed out it seemed as though the winds hit selected spots.
Among the places where damages occurred in Barnesville were on Sleepy Hollow Drive and on Park, Laws, Walnut and North Arch streets as well as North Broadway and at the former Baltimore & Ohio Depot. A large catalpa tree, the last of three near the historic depot, was downed by the winds. Deal said two other catalpa trees had been blown down at the depot in previous storms.
No confirmed reports of tornadoes occurring Sunday in Belmont County have been received, according to Becky Horne, executive administrative assistant at Belmont County's Disaster Services Emergency Operations Center. Belmont County is in the area covered by the Pittsburgh Office of the National Weather Service.
The NWS in Cleveland confirmed Monday that a Sunday storm in Girard in Trumbull County had been classified as a F-o tornado on the Fujita Scale, the weakest of the scale, and an NWS survey team said the circular patterns in the lying debris were the result of a tornado.
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