Today is the 54th anniversary of the famous Palm Sunday tornado outbreak of April 11, 1965. There were 271 killed and approx. 1,500 injured that day. The picture at the top is the Swan Inn at 6 Mile Road and Alpine Avenue in Comstock Park (by Walter Nelson). A long-track F4 tornado moved from Ottawa Co. into Kent Co. – hitting Comstock Park and Rockford, then moving northeast into Montcalm Co. before dissipating. Here’s stories from survivors. Check out photos from the aftermath of the twister. Could it happen again? Major West Michigan tornadoes through the decades.
Photos here. More pictures. 1995 special from WSBT on the tornado outbreak. Here’s old film from 1965 – Toledo. Here’s more old film – look at what radar looked like in those days. A lot more people live in the path of these tornadoes 54 years later.
Here’s how you can be prepared when severe weather threatens. Scientists explore changes to tornado warnings. West Michigan counties with the highest tornado count. Emergency preparedness for severe storms. Four years ago, Alpine Twp. printed The 50th Anniversary of the Palm Sunday Tornado book. This is a history of the tornado that came through Alpine Township on April 11, 1965. We worked with the National Weather Service on this very interesting book. I think it is still available for $20 at the township office on Alpine Ave. and 6 Mile Road. We interviewed those who lived through that tornado and included photos of the destruction of that day. Along with the book, we include a DVD of those interviews and photos.