Buildings damaged when EF1 tornado struck east of Oologah early Sunday morning

Posted at 4:22 PM, Aug 08, 2017
and last updated 2017-08-08 18:21:59-04

OOLOGAH, Okla. -- The National Weather Service confirmed that Sunday's storms produced two tornadoes in Rogers County.

An EF1 tornado struck in Oologah, damaging several buildings and taking down large trees just east of town.
Powerful winds blew off the roof of a shop building at Four Winds Training and Management, a horse training center owned by Sue Heimerman on 4110 Road.

"Thankfully, none of the horses got hurt or none of the trailers or anything else or this barn or my house," Heimerman said. "It was just the roof on the shop building."

The metal and the wood from the roof scattered across the property of her neighbor, Tony Ryser.

"The real blessing is that nothing hit the house," Ryser said. "We feel very blessed, and the mercy of God spared our house."

He and his wife, Kathy, spent hours Sunday picking up the debris that littered the pastures behind his house. They, however, have not yet removed the carport that the tornado flung almost 200 yards from his neighbor's property and struck his shop and basketball goal.

"The hand of God was protecting our home," he said. "It could have been worse. It wasn't, and we're very thankful for that and so thankful for wonderful neighbors."

Ryser said he's glad that his two prized horses, Eddie and Nugget, made it through the storm unscathed.

"Thank you Lord for protecting my horses," he said with a laugh.

Down the road from their house, a large tree fell onto a small home and ripped off the front porch. The tornado also destroyed another neighbor's two-car garage. Despite the extent of the damage, Heimerman said at least all her neighbors are safe.

"People are going to have storm damage at some point in their life," she said. "It was our time. It's all good because nobody got hurt."

Another EF1 tornado hit about six miles south of Chelsea on Sunday, but the Rogers County emergency management director said he had not heard of any major damage there.

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