The morning of April 21, 1967, was crisp and clear, marking the arrival of spring. As the day progressed, dark clouds covered the skies over Oak Lawn, and a deadly tornado touched down in the village just before 5:30 p.m. Cutting through the intersection of 95th Street and Southwest Highway and striking elsewhere, the storm left mountains of debris and over 30 people dead in its wake. Oak Lawn Community High School, St. Gerald Catholic Church, and the Fairway Super Mart were among the structures damaged or destroyed by the high winds. After the disaster, rescue workers and volunteers poured into Oak Lawn to search for survivors, while Christ Community Hospital and other institutions treated more than 400 injured people. The immense cleanup, which took weeks to complete, saw debris hauled out or disposed of in controlled fires. Despite the scope of the devastation, many of the affected structures were repaired or rebuilt within 12 months.
Author Bio: Kevin Korst is the local history coordinator for the Oak Lawn Public Library and the author of Images of America: Oak Lawn. He holds a bachelorís degree in American history from the University of St. Francis and a masterís degree in American history from Eastern Illinois University.
Find Books By Title:
Find Books By Theme:
Find Books By State: