Parker remembers 'Tornado Tuesday', 10 years later - KSFY News - Sioux Falls, SD News, Weather, Sports

Parker remembers 'Tornado Tuesday', 10 years later

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Monday June 24th marks 10 years since the state of South Dakota was hit with a reported 67 tornadoes in 2003.

KSFY Photojournalist Dave Hauck went back to Parker, SD, where people there will never forget the day that feels like yesterday.

"The one thing I do remember, you, know, is that thing just popped out of the sky, it seemed like. That's when warnings just started in our area. Just sitting and watching every news channel there was saying 'there was a tornado that touched down here and there'," Parker resident Mark Kasten said.

"I was in the kitchen baking cookies, listening to the storm warnings and not paying too much attention to it. My husband wasn't home and he came home, was watching TV and said we better get to the basement." Parker resident Gayle Roeder said. "Sounded like they were throwing things around upstairs, the wind picked up. It was scary, you didn't know what was going on up there. When it calmed down, we came out, we expected the house to be half gone. There was nothing. Just looked outside and trees were all over. The house was fine."

"I remember the radio traffic was so busy with different agencies, the fire departments, storm watching, seeing and calling in funnel clouds," Turner County Sheriff Byron Nogelmeier said. "I remember meeting at the fire hall, formulating a plan to make sure everyone was save and no one was injured. It was night time, we couldn't' see much because of the darkness. It was a terrible mess."

Parker Resident Al Roeder: "The roof of the fairgrounds, the grand stand had come up, that was some of the damage. It got worse."

"Many, many tornadoes already reported. At least 5 dozen and looks like there will be more before the night is out."

"I thought of Spencer the next day. But no, we were really lucky," Gayle Roeder said.

"We're extremely fortunate. I'll never forget and once I hear the tornado sirens, I head downstairs. It's nothing to mess around with," Kasten said. "It's serious. And it can happen in no time, flat."

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