Tornado and other severe weather kill 3, damage homes, and knock out power in multiple states

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    SHOALS, Ind. (AP) — A tornado struck an Indiana home, killing one occupant and injuring another while two people died in Arkansas after a tree fell onto a house there as severe weather rumbled through a number of states.

    The tornado that struck the home Sunday evening was part of a storm system that pushed through Martin County, Indiana, WXIN-TV reported. A tornado also touched down Sunday afternoon in Johnson County, south of Indianapolis, damaging at least 75 homes, authorities said.

    Martin County Emergency Management Agency Director Cameron Wolf confirmed the death and injury, according to WXIN, which reported that the home was in a rural area where multiple trees were brought down by high winds.

    Martin County emergency management officials did not immediately respond to an email from The Associated Press seeking additional information about the casualties and the extent of storm damage.

    The town of Shoals, the Martin County seat, is about 85 miles (140 kilometers) southwest of Indianapolis and 80 miles (130 kilometers) northwest of Louisville, Kentucky.

    A tornado also touched down Sunday afternoon in Johnson County, south of Indianapolis, causing damage in communities including Greenwood and Bargersville, officials said.

    Michael Pruitt, deputy fire chief of Bargersville, Indiana, told the Indianapolis Star a search and rescue operation did not find any deaths or injuries after the fire department responded to a 4:15 p.m. report of a structure collapse resulting from the Johnson County tornado, which he said was on the ground for about 15 minutes.

    Bargersville Fire Chief Erik Funkhouser said in a news conference Sunday that at least 75 homes suffered moderate to severe damage in a 3-mile (4.8-kilometer) area as the tornado crossed Indiana State Road 135 in the vicinity of Interstate 69.

    “Obviously, this is a very dangerous scene for the area,” Funkhouser said. “We have power lines that are down all throughout that 3-mile area.”

    Pruitt said affected homes could be without electricity for days.

    Jessyca Copas, her wife and father-in-law watched the funnel cloud as it moved behind a home across the street, the Indianapolis Star reported.

    “It was starting to come back down, and there was like a buzzard caught in it,” Copas said. “I was like, ‘That bird’s not getting out.’”

    A tree would fall into their home where Copas said the family, including her 20-month-old daughter, hunkered down in a bathroom for safety.

    Kimber Olson, 42, told her 8-year-old son to sit in the bathtub while she stood outside and filmed what looked like two cyclones circling toward her apartment in Bargersville

    “The sound is deafening,” Olson said. “You’ll never forget the sound. Your ears pop in such a strange way. You get a ring in your ear.”

    After the tornado got closer, she went inside, closed all the doors and jumped in the bathtub with her son. She said she heard glass explode as her window shattered.

    “Every storm I’m going to be terrified,” she said. “I’m going to be watching — very, very vigilant.”

    Survey teams were set to visit Martin, Johnson, Daviess and Monroe counties on Monday to assess damage from Sunday’s severe storms and tornadoes, according to the National Weather Service office in Indianapolis.

    Sheriff’s officials say two people were killed and a third was injured Sunday night in the central Arkansas community of Carlisle when a tree fell onto a home, KTHV-TV reported.

    In Memphis, Tennessee, a utility company reported about 120,000 homes and business were left without power Sunday as storms carrying strong winds knocked down trees and caused other damage.

    Detroit-based DTE Energy reported Monday that about 75,700 of its customers in southeastern Michigan were without power. Jackson, Michigan-based Consumers Energy also reported outages in southwestern Michigan.

    Michigan Indiana Power reported Sunday evening that about 4,000 of its customers in southwestern Michigan and northern Indiana lost electricity due to the storms. More than 2,000 outages were reported in Benton Harbor, Michigan.

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    AP-US-Severe-Weather, 6th Ld-Writethru

    Jun 26, 2023 8:59 AM – 686 words

    Eds: UPDATES: The summary and story lede have been tweaked to include storm deaths in Arkansas. Adds more photos. With AP Audio. With AP Photos. EDITS: Removes repeated words in second graph.

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    Cover Photo: Debris is left behind after a reported tornado touched down in several areas of Greenwood, Ind., Sunday afternoon, June 25, 2023. (Jenna Watson/The Indianapolis Star via AP)

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