posted: December 2, 2006
A tornado ripped through the woods and down our road Friday night, leaving trees toppled and snapped in half, roofing torn off and sheds, trailers and barns knocked off their foundations, porches ripped frome homes, debris everywhere. We were 40 miles north of home, at our son's opening season basketball game (they defeated a heavily favored team) when we received a phone call from a friend in the fire department saying there was a report that a tornado leveled our next door neighbors house. Launched into an immediate panic, we managed to verify the report to be false. The tornado did in fact strike down the road further. For a brief while, my head swam of images of  our elderly widow neighbor up in a tree, our pool filled with building material, and all our magnificent pine trees lying on their side. The following are photos we took of our road early the next morning (glorious clear aftermath). Neighbors gave us the classic description of a deafening sound of an approaching freight train and terrifying cracks of trees falling all around them. You can follow the path it took as it cleared a perfect swath through the woods. We felt it disrespectful to take pics of damaged homes, but did record some of the destruction to nature.
Mark Fisher December 3, 2006
Thankfuly your home was spared. I hope no one was hurt.
David Gothard December 3, 2006
Miraculously no one was hurt that I'm aware of. We have heard stories of a tornado hitting before we lived in our house. Apparently it picked up the out house, that was in use then, and deposited it in the creek at a good distance away.
J.D. King December 3, 2006
Mike Moran December 3, 2006
How lucky are you? Kristin and I were in Nashville once when a tornado hit the area. It was pretty scary.
Tim O'Brien December 3, 2006
Auntie Em? Auntie Em? Glad you're safe Dave.
Zina Saunders December 3, 2006
Wow. I'm so glad to hear you and no one else was hurt. And I was impressed that you didn't take pictures of your neighbors' house damage. What you've got here says it all.
David Gothard December 3, 2006
Thanks all, for your concerns. Am off to the Brooklyn museum today, to see the current shows...again. Not to miss - inspiring. perhaps I'll bump into a few drawgers there. DG
John Dykes December 3, 2006
Wow - that must have been a stressful period of uncertainty until you returned home... Now...exhale...
Christoph Hitz December 3, 2006
By the time this storm hit Ulster county the radio had broadcasted a Tornado watch. For about twenty minutes we had intense lightning followed by heavy rain. Several of neighbors experienced a power outage. It's good to have You and Your family save and be careful with the chain saw.
randy enos December 3, 2006
I'm glad your house and studio were not hit. We just had heavy rains and spectacular lightning which threw our dog into her usual cardiac arrest....we hustled all the horses in and as soon as we kicked the ducks out of their regular stall to make room for the new pony and got everyone tucked in, a beautiful calm came over the landscape and the sky cleared up and it was beautiful out. The next day I went off to teach at FIT and Leann had to muck 6 stalls and take care of all the horses by herself.
Adam McCauley December 3, 2006
Holy Crap David!!! A tornado, in Pennsylvania, in December??? We just rented "An Inconvenient Truth" the other night. Hmmm...
Mick Wiggins December 3, 2006
Nice narrow escape ! good job!
Edel Rodriguez December 3, 2006
DG, Some of this storm came through our area in NJ too but it was not this bad at all. Glad everyone was O.K.
Jim Paillot December 4, 2006
Yikes. That was a bit of real life that could have been uglier. I am so happy that your family and your home were spared. Sorry about the trees, though. They were beauties.
Leo Espinosa December 5, 2006
Woaa, David! Glad you and your family are okay. I can't believe I missed this post. Be careful walking your dog, though. A lot of trees become very "sensitive" with this kind of stuff.
David Gothard December 5, 2006
Thanks everyone. They say bad stuff comes in batches. Crisis no.2 has hit. My son broke his ankle at practice last night, after only one game on the season. His spirits are justifiably down. As parents, we are only thankful it wasn't worse. DG
Elwood H. Smith December 5, 2006
Wow, that was some powerful weather! Good to hear you are all okay. We had a more timid version of it here in Rhinebeck--microburst I've heard it called. It tore up a few homes here, one at the beginning of Locust Grove Road, but we escaped with a ripped-out power line and a snapped-off pine tree. Mother Nature can be naughty & nice--dreadful mood swings. She's probably bipolar. -E
Leo December 5, 2006
Man, that blows! Lots of rest and calcium!