ST. LOUIS – Storms battered the Tennessee and Ohio valleys on Sunday with tornadoes, high wind and hail before the system swept east. At least five deaths were blamed on the storms, including a 12-year-old boy who was catapulted from his bed.
On Sunday evening, the system's leading edge unleashed a tornado in southern Maryland, authorities said. Two people were killed and at least 42 were being treated for injuries ranging from minor to serious at Civista Medical Center in LaPlata, said chief executive Chris Stefanides.
The twister cut a path through the center of LaPlata, ripping roofs off buildings and blowing out windows, said Nina Voehl, a Charles County spokeswoman. A curfew was put into effect to keep people off the streets.
The hospital itself was hit by the twister, Stefanides said. Winds blew out windows, but hospital workers had enough notice to move patients to safe areas, she said.
"It just started tearing up everything," said Shawn Murphy, who was delivering pizzas when he saw the funnel cloud.
On the system's northern edge, up to 20 inches of snow fell overnight in Wisconsin. At its peak, the storm left 40,000 people without power in northern Wisconsin. Half were still without power Sunday evening.
A tornado cut a four-mile swath through Marble Hill, Mo., south of St. Louis, early Sunday and swept a family from their home. Billy Hoover, 12, was dropped about 40 yards away and died, authorities said. The four others in the house walked away unscathed.
The tornado, packing wind up to 180 mph, injured 16 people, smashed vehicles and bent semitrailers in half before racing east, said meteorologist Jim Packett of the weather service's office in Paducah, Ky.
"It took several houses completely away. Blown to sticks — nothing left but the subfloor," Marble Hill Police Sgt. Dennis Willis said. "They didn't get everybody accounted for until nearly daylight."
High wind sweeping across southern Illinois early Sunday destroyed or damaged several homes about 20 miles north of the Kentucky border. The body of Janie Chamness, 69, was found outside her mobile home, said Robbie McGee, a dispatcher with the Union County Sheriff's Department.
About 25 houses and trailer homes were damaged or destroyed and more than two dozen people suffered mostly minor injuries.
Tony Kaufman said he and his family sought shelter in the basement. "When I worked up the courage to come upstairs I saw that the wind had sucked the dishes out of my kitchen cupboards," he said.
Tornadoes touched down in the middle Tennessee counties of Rutherford and Cannon at about 7:30 a.m., emergency officials said. At least 18 people were injured near Murfreesboro, and more than 60 homes were damaged when a tornado cut a 10-mile path through Rutherford County, officials said.
In Cannon County, "the last report was three homes destroyed — two trailers and a log home," said emergency management director Faye Morse. Three other homes were damaged; no injuries were reported.
It wasn't immediately clear if the tornado was the same one that touched down in Rutherford.
In western Kentucky, straight-line wind destroyed a house, killing a man, said Barry Hart, director of Breckinridge County Emergency Management. A woman found in the wreckage was taken to a hospital, he said.
About 30 people were injured in Kentucky when the storms hit around 4 a.m., authorities said. "That's probably why we have more injuries than we usually do, because it's hard to alert people at that hour," said Ray Bowman, a spokesman for the state Division of Emergency Management.
Up to 20 inches of snow fell at the northern Wisconsin community of Elcho, where the 140-student Elcho High School celebrated its prom Saturday night.
"The power kept flashing out, and the speakers with the music kept going out," 16-year-old Kelsey Wolff said. "It was called 'A Night to Remember.' We were all laughing about that."
More than 35,000 customers of Wisconsin Public Service Corp. were without power Sunday in northern Wisconsin, Wisconsin Public Service Corp. reported. In Minnesota, Xcel Energy spokeswoman Mary Sandok said 57,000 customers lost power during the night. Power had been mostly restored by Sunday night.
Authorities in Minnesota said the snow was a factor in at least four traffic deaths.
In Ohio, thunderstorms with high wind and hail the size of golf balls damaged rooftops and cars Sunday, and there were tornado warnings in at least nine counties by late afternoon.
High wind felled trees, tossed semitrailers and toppled a church steeple in two counties in central Virginia. An estimated 50 homes were destroyed. There no immediate reports of deaths or serious injuries.
A 10-block section of Bedford was sealed off Sunday night because of heavy damage to buildings, said Bedford County Sheriff Michael Brown. Interstate 95 and several other roads were closed because of overturned cars and wind-driven debris.