April 3, 1956--a day that many local people remember. It was the day that many saw or were near the first tornado that happened locally.
The temperature was in the low 80's and the afternoon was so pleasant, I decided to paint the proch. I finished my job and went in to watch the sis oclock news on WOOD. the weatherman, Frank Slaymaker, mentioned something about the possibility of tornados in the area that night. Immediately after, My neighbor lady was knocking on the door and hollering< "Get in the basement, there's a tornado coming." We all rushed to the basementr and waited. She had seen the tornado coming over the dunes and we weree close o being a target. Fortunately, it missed us and went to the north. It had already hit the old lighthouse on the north end of the oval beach. Next, it hit the Jim Boyce home, flattened it and left the occupants outside and alive. The Macillester home on the B-line road was flattened. It jumped to an area just sough of 32nd Street in Holland and then on to where it did the most damage. HUDSONVILLE. Many buildings,, including homes, were flattened or damaged, but worst of all, seventeen people were killed and many injured.
It gave us a new respect for tornado warnings.