Four-decade-old family barn destroyed in Warren County tornado

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WARREN COUNTY, Tenn. (WKRN) — A family who lives on a Viola farm said a tornado hit around 5 p.m. Friday and it was eerie. There was no heavy rain, just lots of heavy wind.

To hear it described, it sounds like the scene from a movie.

Luanne Laxson tells News 2 that a family heirloom, an old red barn dating back more than 40 years, was completely demolished.

“This farm is where my father grew up, and he built this barn for my sister and I to raise calves and he’s been gone now three years,” said Laxson.

It happened in the matter of a second, cell phone video obtained by News 2 showed the moment when the tornado hit the area. The man who took the video described what he and his son felt as the storm went by.

“You just kind of felt this push of pressure and wind through the truck,” said Ryan French, “Like it was more like it was pulling it rather than a wind blowing.”

Parts of Laxson’s red barn were thrown across Cecil Laxson Road, a street named after her grandfather. She now said they have a long road of cleanup and recovery ahead.

“It’s sad— it’s heartbreaking,” said Laxson, “It really is. It hurts because dad did build it and we helped him.”

The Laxson family does plan to rebuild. In fact, they say as long as insurance will pay for it, they would like to have the barn rebuilt exactly how it was before.

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