Bellville woman, 76, survives after straight-line winds flip her trailer home

BELLVILLE, Ohio - A 76-year-old Bellville woman survived after powerful winds swept through Richland County and flipped over her trailer home on Mock Road Tuesday night.

Relatives said Shirley (they declined to give her last name) suffered a concussion and broke her sternum. She was being treated at Grant Medical Center in Columbus.

Her son-in-law, Brian Mowry, was listening to scanner traffic detailing the nasty weather weather moving into Bellville, and then heard the emergency call to Shirley's home.

"At first, I didn't realize what address it was and then when I did, I rushed over here," Mowry said.

By the time he arrived, rescue crews had pulled Shirley from a window of a back bedroom. That section of the home came to rest on top of a crushed barn. Other parts of the structure, including a the living room and kitchen, were smashed, according to Mowry.

"It's my first time experiencing this. I'm kind of in shock still. It's life-changing."

A few other trees were knocked down on the same road, including one that crashed on top of a pickup truck.

Keith Layfield, 86, lives next door to the toppled trailer and said the wind, rain and hail was frightening around 9:30 p.m.

"Thank God it didn't do any worse," Layfield said.

Richland County Emergency Management Director Mike Bailey said he spoke with the National Weather Service on Wednesday morning and was told the damage was caused by 80-mile-per-hour straight-line winds, not a tornado.

Part of a canopy at a BP gas station on Ohio 97 near I-71 was torn off. Below it, a gas pump was knocked over.

A nearby Days Inn motel sustained damage, when part of a wall and siding blew off the building.

Ajay Patel, the owner of the motel, said there were no injures among the 10 to 15 rooms that were occupied.

Patel said the storm was very noisy and an alert of a possible tornado didn't sound until five minutes after the storm moved through the area.

About 20 pine trees at his home behind the motel were knocked over and a few roof shingles were also tossed to his yard.

"I have a lot of work to do. I got a lot of work to do," Patel said.

Print this article Back to Top