MACON COUNTY, Tenn. (WKRN) – February 5, 2008 – a day that haunts all who survived a deadly tornado outbreak. It’s known as the 2008 Super Tuesday Outbreak.
The National Weather Services recorded 14 tornado touchdowns in Middle Tennessee that claimed the lives of 22 people.
One of the recorded tornadoes, a powerful EF-3. It traveled a 50-mile path across several counties. Macon County taking the brunt of the storm with 13 people killed, 140 homes destroyed and millions of dollars in damage.
Kayla Allen and her sister Keisha Leath will never forget that day. “At first, that day was beautiful outside. It was my sister’s birthday,” Leath remembered.
Leath said the weather suddenly turned dark and stormy. A short time later that EF-3 tornado was barreling toward their families. “We didn’t know if they were okay at one point. So, there was lots of praying that night,” Allen said.
Leath and Allen said their grandmother’s and cousin’s houses were destroyed. “It completely lifted up their house. All was left was their basement.” Allen described one of the scenes, “None of them got hurt.”
President George W. Bush toured the damage of Macon County two days later. The Super Tuesday Outbreak caused ten million dollars in tree damage alone in the state.
Despite the destruction, the communities came together to persevere and rebuild.
The tornado outbreak is called “Super Tuesday” because Tennessee was one of the states holding the presidential primary election on Feb. 5, 2008.
As part of News 2’s weeklong coverage of Severe Weather and Flood Preparedness Week coverage, Danielle Breezy brings you stories of storm survivors from across Middle Tennessee. Click here to see more.