Severe Storms Damage Buildings In Downtown Greenville

Alan Scaia
June 20, 2019 - 6:02 am
Highland Terrace Baptist Church

Credit: NBCDFW.com

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GREENVILLE (1080 KRLD) - Strong winds peeled the roofs off several buildings in Greenville Wednesday evening.

The storms damaged roofs and broke windows, shutting down several streets in Downtown Greenville as people started clearing debris Wednesday evening.

"All we heard was the wind blowing really bad," says Leticia Gillespie, who owns a salon. "I saw things flying. We got that warning that said there's a tornado warning, but we didn't think it's true because nothing like that really happens here."

At Highland Terrace Baptist Church a few blocks away, about 20 people had gathered for choir practice.

"Within three seconds, a loud boom and the roof here was taken off and deposited into that Sunday school class, about 30 feet from us," says parishioner Wynema Payne.

Pastor Chet Haney says that classroom would have been filled with children just 20 minutes later.

"I think often about what it would be like if a tornado came through our town because you hear about it everywhere else, and you never think it would happen to you," Haney says.

The National Weather Service will survey damage Thursday to confirm whether a tornado hit Greenville and the strength of the wind.