A tornado touched down in Southern Monroe County on Sunday, June 25, 2023, leaving a trail of destruction. While no injuries were reported, several buildings and properties suffered damage.
Debbie Fulcher, a resident of the 8000 block of Lee Phillips, described the extent of the destruction, stating, “We’ve lost tree limbs, but nothing like this.” The Fulcher home had some of its siding blown off by the tornado, and nearby trees and an outbuilding were also damaged. Additionally, a Ford Pickup truck was totaled after being struck by what the Fulchers believe was a propane tank hurled through the air.
The storm also took a toll on the Fulchers’ cherished 200-year-old Maple trees. Looking at other trees Debbie lamented, “We were just getting to the point of having some nice shade trees.”
Monroe Fire Protection District (MFD) Public Information Officer (PIO), Jason Allen, confirmed the presence of a tornado in the area. The National Weather Service will now assess the strength of the tornado. Allen stated that the county’s Emergency Management Agency (EMA) director and representatives from the National Weather Service will convene on Monday to evaluate the extent of the tornado’s strength.
According to Allen, the tornado impacted various areas, including Rockport Road, Rockeast, Carmichael, Lee Phillips, and Snow Road. Numerous structures, including buildings and barns, were damaged. The storm took a wide path.
Due to fallen trees obstructing the road, crews from the MFD were awaiting assistance from Duke Electric before trees blocking the road could be cleared, and the 8800 block of Rockport reopened. Allen added that all seven MFD fire stations at one point were involved in assisting Monroe County residents during the aftermath of the tornado. Engines 21, 23, and 39 were dispatched southwards, while Engine 22 and 24 were sent eastward, and Engine 25 headed north.
One eyewitness, Bette Lucas, who resides on Mount Zion Road, shared her experience of the tornado. Initially thinking the storm had passed with only a few raindrops, she ventured outside in search of a rainbow. However, she ended up capturing a video of the tornado cutting through the area just south of her location.
Although ominous clouds were visible from Bloomington, no tornado touched down in that area. Meanwhile, residents near Ellettsville reported finding golf ball-sized hail, with reports of even larger hailstones from individuals in Spencer, Indiana.
The storm began after 3 p.m. on Sunday afternoon as predicted.
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