Memories of the April 2, 1982, Paris tornado

Apr 1, 2010 Full story: Paris Texas 54

April 2, 1982, is one of those days modern day Paris residents remember just as those before us must have recalled the devastating Fire of 1916.

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Since: Mar 10

Lindale, TX

#1 Apr 2, 2010
I stood in the front yard and watched as the first tornado hit Paris Lumber. Seeing it was headed my way, I drove south (I lived on Airport Road in Reno). Keeping an eye on the storm's evolution, I stayed south of it, going around the loop, out the Atlas highway, and getting behind the storm. Saw two more smaller tornados following the first. When I finally got back home, the house was fine, but several trees in the yard were damaged. There was a string of homes destroyed about 1/4 mile north of my house.
Video

Paris, TX

#2 Apr 2, 2010
GayleTX

Sherman, TX

#3 Apr 2, 2010
The tornado began forming many miles west of Paris and I, unfortunately, was driving through a rural area right toward it. It went over my car and I watched in my rearview mirror as it skipped along the ground, rose back up in the clouds, bounced back down and then hit a house on a hill several miles behind me......I didn't know at the time it was a house but I could see the debris flying in the air where it hit. I drove on to my home about 5 miles ahead and saw a barn that had been destroyed....when I got to my house it was sunny and still..and my husband was could not understand why I got out of the car crying and semi-hysterical. I'm not sure he believed what I had just experienced til he saw it on the news that night.
hmmm

San Francisco, CA

#4 Apr 2, 2010
GayleTX wrote:
The tornado began forming many miles west of Paris and I, unfortunately, was driving through a rural area right toward it. It went over my car and I watched in my rearview mirror as it skipped along the ground, rose back up in the clouds, bounced back down and then hit a house on a hill several miles behind me......I didn't know at the time it was a house but I could see the debris flying in the air where it hit. I drove on to my home about 5 miles ahead and saw a barn that had been destroyed....when I got to my house it was sunny and still..and my husband was could not understand why I got out of the car crying and semi-hysterical. I'm not sure he believed what I had just experienced til he saw it on the news that night.
oh my goodness! aint no way l would have gotten out of the car much less drive. you'd have to pry me out from under the seat! what a experience to tell your grandkids!

“Illegitimi non carborundum”

Since: Apr 10

...

#5 Apr 2, 2010
I was living in Dallas then. One of my friends worked for Channel 8 and called me at work to tell me. Channel 8 initially heard it hit right on the square. The rest of the night was filled with worry and lots of calls from friends who were also living in Dallas. Finally around 9pm a friend of a friend knew someone who got through to a ham radio operator. It was then that we found out where it hit. The next morning some of my friends came home to find out about loved ones. I came home a week later and drove the path, some areas I got somewhat lost because it looked like a bomb exploded; it was very disorienting. The First Christian Church was a sad sight.
hmmm

San Francisco, CA

#6 Apr 2, 2010
DazzleDat wrote:
I was living in Dallas then. One of my friends worked for Channel 8 and called me at work to tell me. Channel 8 initially heard it hit right on the square. The rest of the night was filled with worry and lots of calls from friends who were also living in Dallas. Finally around 9pm a friend of a friend knew someone who got through to a ham radio operator. It was then that we found out where it hit. The next morning some of my friends came home to find out about loved ones. I came home a week later and drove the path, some areas I got somewhat lost because it looked like a bomb exploded; it was very disorienting. The First Christian Church was a sad sight.
l remember someone saying the national guard was mobilized for fear of looting? or maybe l'm thinking of another tornado somewhere else.

“Illegitimi non carborundum”

Since: Apr 10

...

#7 Apr 2, 2010
hmmm wrote:
<quoted text> l remember someone saying the national guard was mobilized for fear of looting? or maybe l'm thinking of another tornado somewhere else.
My friends that went the next day had to show their ID's to get into town. A week later I had no problem getting into town or anywhere around town.
hmmm

San Francisco, CA

#8 Apr 2, 2010
DazzleDat wrote:
<quoted text>
My friends that went the next day had to show their ID's to get into town. A week later I had no problem getting into town or anywhere around town.
my husband said we had a copy of the special collectors edition magazine of the paris tornado.oh my goodness! it said the n a and the army reserve were both called. l cannot believe the devastation! theres nothing left where houses once stood!
really

Dike, TX

#9 Apr 2, 2010
i was 6 when it happend. i remember our dog in the back yard going nuts and my parents in the kitchen. my brother and i were watching tv when they broke through with the weather alert. i remember going to the kitchen complaining about some guy talking about the weather and my cartoons were off. dad went to the living room to check it out then everything just shut down. i remember dad racing through the house opening up windows and yelling for all of us to get under the bed. you heard it way before it actually got close. i had no idea what was going on. but i remember it feeling like we were in a vacuum and all the air being sucked out of the house. we lived not too far from t g givens. our house got minor damage but the one next to us was gone.
Damon

Princeton, TX

#10 Apr 2, 2010
I was on top of my treehouse watching it. I remember it changing colors when it hit Paris lumber. It went from black to white and had reflective stuff going on. Aikin had uil that day. My brother said the bus was rocking around on the way back. He said it was llifted up but I am not sure about that
paris tx

Dallas, TX

#11 Apr 2, 2010
My parents and grandparents have told me about this horrible tornadoe many times. we have two of the magazines about it and the pictures inside were horrible. it really freaked me out how it stormed some here today and it got dark then the sun would come out. im just glad that my family survived in the tornado.
ryan

Grand Prairie, TX

#12 Apr 3, 2010
paris tx wrote:
My parents and grandparents have told me about this horrible tornadoe many times. we have two of the magazines about it and the pictures inside were horrible. it really freaked me out how it stormed some here today and it got dark then the sun would come out. im just glad that my family survived in the tornado.
I was a kid too. We lived in the country but was shocked at the sight when we came to town it was unreal,
cash

Clarksville, TX

#13 Apr 3, 2010
we found a rhode island red roster that was sucked up in a royal crown coke bottle and was still alive
hayseed

Clarksville, TX

#14 Apr 3, 2010
cash wrote:
we found a rhode island red roster that was sucked up in a royal crown coke bottle and was still alive
I want my rooster back.
cash

Clarksville, TX

#15 Apr 3, 2010
hayseed wrote:
<quoted text>
I want my rooster back.
we put him in the hen yard where he passed from being over zealous in his amores sorry for your loss
patrick

Decatur, AL

#16 May 4, 2011
hmmm wrote:
<quoted text>my husband said we had a copy of the special collectors edition magazine of the paris tornado.oh my goodness! it said the n a and the army reserve were both called. l cannot believe the devastation! theres nothing left where houses once stood!
I will never forget that day I was 9 y o. Now living in north AL living through another devastated area ripped apart by tornadoes last week. I would love to see the magazines with photos of the 1982 tornadoes to compare the 2.
bus rider

Paris, TX

#17 May 5, 2011
Damon wrote:
I was on top of my treehouse watching it. I remember it changing colors when it hit Paris lumber. It went from black to white and had reflective stuff going on. Aikin had uil that day. My brother said the bus was rocking around on the way back. He said it was llifted up but I am not sure about that
Your brother is NOT lying to you. I was on one of the buses that day. One was blown up on to two wheels. It wasn't way over like Dukes of Hazard or anything, but it did tilt.
maggie

Paris, TX

#18 May 5, 2011
We rode out the Paris 1982 tornado in a neighbor's storm cellar. There were a dozen or more of us in it. When we came out three families had lost homes ( us included). Down the street our neighbor, Helen McQueen, died. Three blocks away 2 women died inside a church.11 died in all. We rebuilt, and we live in that house today. I have a picture album and 2 published books of pictures of the Paris tornado. Paris has had 3 tornados since that one in 1982. One came 1 year later an damaged dozens of homes ( some in the same area).Then there was one out by the Chisum school that damaged houses and buildings. Then there was on the NE loop that damaged Best Western Motel and other buildings. I think there was also a small one that took roofs off in southern Morningside area.Just this year we had one 6 miles SW of Paris that took some barns and moved a house off it's foundation. One barn landed in my daughter's side yard. Don't forget the terrible Emerson tornado ( people injured) and one out north-west by the red river by Direct..I'm sure I missed some of those since 1982.
maggie

Paris, TX

#19 May 5, 2011
Damon wrote:
I was on top of my treehouse watching it. I remember it changing colors when it hit Paris lumber. It went from black to white and had reflective stuff going on. Aikin had uil that day. My brother said the bus was rocking around on the way back. He said it was llifted up but I am not sure about that
P.S. The Paris tornado hit on a friday ( Good Friday before Easter). It was a school holiday. I got off work at noon and picked up my kids at daycare ( not Aikin)..Even the papers stated that had it been a school day , the school buses would have been letting kids off..and the deaths would have been much more. It also tells about no school that day in my tornado books that were sold by The Paris News..If he was on a bus, it was for a different reason..and not a Paris school bus..
hayseed

Clarksville, TX

#20 May 5, 2011
maggie wrote:
<quoted text>P.S. The Paris tornado hit on a friday ( Good Friday before Easter). It was a school holiday. I got off work at noon and picked up my kids at daycare ( not Aikin)..Even the papers stated that had it been a school day , the school buses would have been letting kids off..and the deaths would have been much more. It also tells about no school that day in my tornado books that were sold by The Paris News..If he was on a bus, it was for a different reason..and not a Paris school bus..
UIL.

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