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MUNCIE — Christina Cross said she and her husband, Scott, were asleep when the sound of high winds woke them up around 2:15 a.m. Thursday.

"We heard glass breaking, so we ran to get the three kids," she said, adding they huddled together and eventually fell back to sleep.

When Cross woke up later that morning, her husband was already outside surveying the damage.

"I kept hearing, ‘Oh my gosh. Oh my gosh,’ and it got louder and louder," she said.

"I thought, ‘This can’t be good,’" said Cross, who walked outside to see large trees and power lines down in her backyard and an alley.

The storm broke her living-room window and damaged siding on her house and the one next door, which she and her husband rent to her brother.

The early-morning storm, which brought strong winds and rain, knocked down trees and utility poles and lines throughout Vermilion County, according to local emergency management agency officials.

"We had an unconfirmed picture of a funnel cloud, but we’re still waiting to hear from the National Weather Service," said Director Ted Fisher.

The storm also knocked over a FedEx truck with a 53-foot trailer that was heading west on Interstate 74. The crash west of Oakwood sent the driver and a passenger to the hospital. A FedEx employee who was waiting for a tow truck said one of them had been released, but the other remained hospitalized mid-morning on Thursday.

Fisher said there were no other reports of injuries. However, the storm knocked out electricity, landline phone service and cable TV to hundreds of residents.

Oakwood schools, Georgetown-Ridge Farm High School and the district’s early-childhood program, and Carle on Vermilion Street, which lost power, were closed for the day, and Danville’s North Ridge Middle School and Edison and Liberty elementary schools dismissed at 11 a.m. due to the outage.

Fisher said Muncie apparently got the brunt of the storm.

Cynthia Lane, the village’s mayor, said she was up late monitoring weather reports on her computer and saw a bulletin saying the storm would expire at 2:45 a.m. She headed for bed, thinking the worst of it was over.

"Then the wind and rain came," she said. "The power went out, came back and then went out for good."

U.S. 150 between Muncie and Fithian will be closed all day while utility crews work to repair nine transmission poles that had been knocked down, according to an Ameren supervisor. They also had to repair other downed poles and lines in the village and surrounding area.

Lane said she and her husband, Shane Warner, who works for the Vermilion County Highway Department, were up early checking on residents and property damage.

"I think we were very, very lucky," she said, adding a tree fell on a roof and another on a garage, but no one was hurt.

Over at her house on the north side of town, Lynn Simpson was waiting for an insurance adjuster. A large tree in her front yard fell on her roof, and her garage collapsed.

"The whole side is hanging by a fence post and a ladder," she said of her garage. "That’s what’s actually holding it up."

Simpson said she and her husband were woken up by the wind this morning but didn’t realize the extent of the damage until the sun came up.

"I’m very shocked to see this," said Simpson, who has lived in the village for more than 30 years. "We’re just hoping it doesn’t rain, which it’s going to do. We’re done."


Noelle McGee is a Danville-based reporter at The News-Gazette. Her email is, and you can follow her on Twitter (@n_mcgee).