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franklin county times

Inside Wal-Mart: Flying glass

By Staff
BLOWN OVER Several area businesses caught the brunt of the tornado including the Subway sandwich shop near Highway 80 in Newton. Photo by Paula Merritt/The Meridian Star
By Fredie Carmichael / staff writer
Dec. 20, 2002
NEWTON Nathan Cumberland was in the Wal-Mart here Thursday buying a Christmas present for his dad when he quickly found himself in the path of destruction.
Cumberland, 25, of Newton, was shopping for a shotgun when he said the lights started "flickering off and on."
Cumberland was one of many shoppers inside one of Newton's major shopping venues when an F-2 tornado ripped through town about 1 p.m. The store was severely damaged.
Many of the 50 people reported injured around town included Wal-Mart customers, who were cut by shattered glass when the store's front windows blew.
Sharon Hillie, 21, of Newton, was at the front of the store when the tornado struck.
Standing outside the store hours after the storm had passed, Hillie was still picking pieces of broken glass out of her hair and clothes.
Hillie said she thought she was going to die.

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