A tornado hit the Missouri town of Orrick on Saturday night, reportedly uprooting trees, downing power lines and scattering debris.
Mother's Day was expected to be stormy for much of the country.
The twister was part of a severe weather system that marched across the Kansas City area, with tornadoes also being reported elsewhere in northwestern Missouri overnight.
Becca Foote, a resident of the hard-hit town, told the The Kansas City Star she was watching the storm approach.
"It started getting larger and larger," she told the newspaper.
While the twister caused widespread damage to homes and businesses, the town's 800 or so residents were able to take shelter early on when tornado sirens sounded, the newspaper said.
“We’ve been very fortunate,” Orrick Fire Chief Mike Arnold told the newspaper.
Looking ahead, Mother's Day promised to be stormy or snowy for much of the country, with more thunderstorms expected to threaten parts of the Midwest, according to The Weather Channel.
Tornadoes, large hail and damaging winds were expected in Iowa, southeast Nebraska, northeast Kansas and northern Missouri, forecasters said. The weather system could producer "a few strong, long-track tornadoes," according to The Weather Channel.
"The cities of Des Moines, Lincoln and Omaha could be under the gun for tornadoes later today," The Weather Channel's lead meteorologist Michael Palmer said.
Parts of the Rockies were also bracing for a Spring snow storm, he said, with rain turning to snow later on Sunday. Denver could get up to 8 inches, and Boulder a foot.
- F. Brinley Bruton