HOWE, Texas - The National Weather Service confirms at least three tornadoes ripped through Grayson County as severe storms rolled through North Texas Tuesday night.
An EF-1 tornado hit Whitesboro in eastern Grayson County just off of Highway 82. An EF-0 tornado touched down in Bells as well as Howe.
Several homes and businesses have extensive damaged. Video from SKY 4 showed numerous homes, portable structures and sheds in ruins in Howe.
“We were in the hallway when it hit. So, you know, I had to get her into the bathroom and I put her in the bathroom and I got on top of her. I protected her. And after that it hit and we were scared. We didn’t know what was happening,” said Connor Curry, who was home in Howe with his grandmother at the time.
“It was dark last night. I couldn’t see a whole lot. But when I looked up I could see the lightning so I realized the roof was gone,” added Linda Rea.
Truck driver Gene Marshall was passing through Howe Tuesday night on his way to make a delivery in Irving. He pulled off of U.S. 75 to get out of the storm and take video of what he thought was an impressive light show. But things quickly got worse when the ‘light show’ was coming right at him.
“I've got nowhere to go, no time to duck and cover,” said Marshall. “And you are sitting in your truck so what does that mean? Sit and pray. That's about all you can do.”
The tornado picked up his rig and launched it across the access road, leaving him pinned inside the cab. Firefighters worked in the rain to free him.
A doctor’s office in Whitesboro is now without a roof likely because of a tornado. Dr. Alfred Jowitt, who owns the clinic, said his first priority will be to try to get inside and salvage some of his patient’s medical records.
Neighbors are just getting a good look at the damage to their own homes.
“It’s overwhelming. I mean, it’s like oh my gosh. We usually clean up our own mess and there’s no way my husband and I can clean this up. There’s just trees everywhere,” said Charlotte Gambill
Officials said at least five people in the county were injured. One person was reportedly inside a house and the others were in vehicles when the storm passed. One of the drivers was hospitalized in critical condition.
The Bells and Howe school districts canceled classes for Wednesday.
Howe ISD has a total of three schools – an elementary, middle and high school. The storm damaged parts of the high school building. Light poles were knocked over in the school parking lot and aluminum sheds and storage buildings from a nearby business are scattered around the campus.
Repair crews are also working to get power restored despite all the downed power lines throughout the county.