STORM DAMAGED HOME IN ARKANSAS
Danny Johnston  /  AP
David Conger carries belongings from a crushed storage building behind his aunt's storm-damaged home Monday in Haskell, Ark.
updated 10/19/2004 3:57:04 PM ET 2004-10-19T19:57:04

Three people were killed by a tornado in Missouri while twisters and heavy rain elsewhere in the South caused significant damage, officials said Tuesday.

The tornado killed three members of one family in a group of three homes near the southeastern Missouri community of Cooter, the Pemiscot County Sheriff’s Department said Tuesday. Parts of the homes were found up to a mile away, Deputy Ferrell Stewart said.

In Potosi, Mo., the roof of a lumber store collapsed during the storms, sparing seven people inside but injuring a man struck by a wall that collapsed into the parking lot.

Trailer twisted 'like a washcloth'
In Florence, Ala., Tim Hart was watching from his front door when a tornado flipped his neighbors’ mobile home.

Video: “A cloud came this way, and one came this way,” Hart said, pointing in opposite directions as he described the Monday afternoon twister. “Then they met. The rain actually started going upward. Then, it picked the trailer up off the ground and it started to twist it like a washcloth. I thought they were dead.”

In the mobile home, B.J. Tingle suffered an injured jaw, and one of her two children had a cut.

“I dove on top of my family,” said her husband, Chris Tingle. “We were all hanging on to each other.”

Damage was scattered across two Alabama counties.

Arkansas, Tenn. damage
In Arkansas, two tornadoes injured at least 11 people and damaged dozens of homes and other buildings, and electrical service was knocked for more than 7,000 customers.

Birth of a tornadoOne home was destroyed and three others were damaged near Loretto, Tenn. The National Weather Service said it couldn’t confirm a tornado.

One of the Arkansas twisters ripped away the top and roof of John Harris’ home near Sardis, leaving clothes still hanging in a closet.

“It’s all gone,” Harris said. But his wife and young daughter had left 15 minutes before the storm hit, he added.

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