One Killed, Four Injured In EF3 Reading Tornado

By: Ryan Smith, Blake Kresge Email
By: Ryan Smith, Blake Kresge Email

Reading, KAN. (WIBW/AP)-- Reading, a small town of about 250 located 19 miles northeast of Emporia was destroyed in a late Saturday night EF3 tornado.

The twister killed 53-year-old Don Chesmore.

Kansas Division of Emergency Management spokeswoman Sharon Watson says Don Chesmore was in a mobile home that flipped over Saturday night.

Chesmore was taken to a hospital in Emporia, where he was pronounced dead. Four others were injured in the tornado.

About 20 houses, the downtown post office, bank, the town's only cafe and the elementary school were all hit.

A command center is set up for relief at the fire station, located at 102 Franklin.

The tornado that struck the town has been classified as an EF3, a category with winds ranging up to 165 mph. It destroyed at least 20 homes.

Watson says the sheriff is asking residents to leave the
community at 6 p.m. Sunday because most of the town doesn't have power. They will be allowed to return at 9 a.m. Monday.

Volunteers wanting to help clean up are asked to wait until Monday to head to Reading. If you're looking to help, Lyon County Emergency Management says to meet at 9 a.m. at the Volunteer Reception Center. You'll need work shoes, long pants, a hat and gloves to help out.

Authorities are asking people trying to see the damage to stay away as they clean up and continue rescue efforts.


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