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Lone Grove Tornado

by Nate Billings and Steve Sisney Modified: April 18, 2013 at 12:21 pm •  Published: February 12, 2009

So far, at least eight people, possibly nine, are dead after a tornado moved through Lone Grove, Okla., Tuesday night as part of the rare February severe storms that struck our state. Usually after a big news event, I feel like writing something about what it was like for us as photographers or how hard we worked to cover the story. We had people working Tuesday night and others starting before dawn Wednesday morning, but I don’t want to write about that today.

Right now, the details of how we spent Wednesday don’t seem very interesting compared to what the people and emergency workers in Lone Grove have been through or what many of them have lost. So, let’s keep the attention on them.

Here’s some of our photos from Lone Grove.

Lone Grove firefighter Greg Allen (top) and volunteer Jack Brown search through broken trees north of Highway 70 in Lone Grove following deadly storms around Lone Grove, Okla., Feb. 11, 2009. By John Clanton, The Oklahoman
Lone Grove firefighter Greg Allen (top) and volunteer Jack Brown search through broken trees north of Highway 70 in Lone Grove following deadly storms around Lone Grove, Okla., Feb. 11, 2009. By John Clanton, The Oklahoman

Lone Grove firefighter Greg Allen (top) and volunteer Jack Brown search through broken trees north of Highway 70 in Lone Grove following deadly storms the day before around Lone Grove, Okla., Feb. 11, 2009. By John Clanton, The Oklahoman 

Margie Hughes (left) gets a hug from her sister Neda Wilson as they look at Margie's destroyed home following deadly storms around Lone Grove, Okla., Feb. 11, 2009. By John Clanton, The Oklahoman
Margie Hughes (left) gets a hug from her sister Neda Wilson as they look at Margie's destroyed home following deadly storms around Lone Grove, Okla., Feb. 11, 2009. By John Clanton, The Oklahoman

Margie Hughes, left, gets a hug from her sister Neda Wilson as they look at Margie’s destroyed home following deadly storms the day before around Lone Grove, Okla., Feb. 11, 2009. By John Clanton, The Oklahoman

John Taliaferro sees the remains of his furniture store in first light after  Tuesday's deadly tornado in  Lone Grove, Okla., on Wednesday, Feb. 11, 2009.   Photo by Steve Sisney, The Oklahoman
John Taliaferro sees the remains of his furniture store in first light after Tuesday's deadly tornado in Lone Grove, Okla., on Wednesday, Feb. 11, 2009. Photo by Steve Sisney, The Oklahoman

John Taliaferro sees the remains of his furniture store in first light after Tuesday’s deadly tornado in  Lone Grove, Okla., on Wednesday, Feb. 11, 2009. Photo by Steve Sisney, The Oklahoman

A home on Highway 70 was destroyed in Tuesday's deadly tornado in  Lone Grove, Okla. on Wednesday, Feb. 11, 2009.   Photo by Steve Sisney, The Oklahoman
A home on Highway 70 was destroyed in Tuesday's deadly tornado in Lone Grove, Okla. on Wednesday, Feb. 11, 2009. Photo by Steve Sisney, The Oklahoman

A home on Highway 70 was destroyed in Tuesday’s deadly tornado in  Lone Grove, Okla., on Wednesday, Feb. 11, 2009. Photo by Steve Sisney, The Oklahoman

Lone Grove firemen search a home for unaccounted people on the north side of SH 70 in Lone Grove, Wednesday, Feb. 11, 2009. BY PAUL B. SOUTHERLAND, THE OKLAHOMAN
Lone Grove firemen search a home for unaccounted people on the north side of SH 70 in Lone Grove, Wednesday, Feb. 11, 2009. BY PAUL B. SOUTHERLAND, THE OKLAHOMAN

Lone Grove firemen search a home for unaccounted people on the north side of SH 70 in Lone Grove, Wednesday, Feb. 11, 2009. BY PAUL B. SOUTHERLAND, THE OKLAHOMAN

Trina Quinton sits with a lost dog at her cousin's destroyed furniture store, John's Furniture, on the north side of SH 70 in Lone Grove Wednesday, Feb. 11, 2009. BY PAUL B. SOUTHERLAND, THE OKLAHOMAN
Trina Quinton sits with a lost dog at her cousin's destroyed furniture store, John's Furniture, on the north side of SH 70 in Lone Grove Wednesday, Feb. 11, 2009. BY PAUL B. SOUTHERLAND, THE OKLAHOMAN

Trina Quinton sits with a lost dog at her cousin’s destroyed furniture store, John’s Furniture, on the north side of SH 70 in Lone Grove, Wednesday, Feb. 11, 2009. BY PAUL B. SOUTHERLAND, THE OKLAHOMAN

Trina Quinton sits with a lost dog at her cousin's destroyed furniture store, John's Furniture, on the north side of SH 70 in Lone Grove Wednesday, Feb. 11, 2009. BY PAUL B. SOUTHERLAND, THE OKLAHOMAN
Trina Quinton sits with a lost dog at her cousin's destroyed furniture store, John's Furniture, on the north side of SH 70 in Lone Grove Wednesday, Feb. 11, 2009. BY PAUL B. SOUTHERLAND, THE OKLAHOMAN

Searchers look through mobile home debris for four unaccounted for persons on Brock Road in Lone Grove, Wednesday, Feb. 11, 2009. The rails in the tree are the base of a mobile home. BY PAUL B. SOUTHERLAND, THE OKLAHOMAN 

Deric Brawley, 12, sits with his dog on a friend's couch inside their destroyed home following deadly storms around Lone Grove, Okla., Feb. 11, 2009. By John Clanton, The Oklahoman
Deric Brawley, 12, sits with his dog on a friend's couch inside their destroyed home following deadly storms around Lone Grove, Okla., Feb. 11, 2009. By John Clanton, The Oklahoman

Deric Brawley, 12, sits with his dog on a friend’s couch inside their destroyed home following deadly storms the day before around Lone Grove, Okla., Feb. 11, 2009. By John Clanton, The Oklahoman

Gov. Brad Henry talks with Sue Rose while surveying damage at the Bar K Mobile Home Park in Lone Grove, Okla., Wednesday, February 11, 2009. On Tuesday, February 10, 2009, a tornado moved through Lone Grove killing at least eight people. Rose was unable to seek shelter in time to avoid the tornado and rode out the storm in a mobile home with four other people. The mobile home was damaged, however, the people survived. BY NATE BILLINGS, THE OKLAHOMAN
Gov. Brad Henry talks with Sue Rose while surveying damage at the Bar K Mobile Home Park in Lone Grove, Okla., Wednesday, February 11, 2009. On Tuesday, February 10, 2009, a tornado moved through Lone Grove killing at least eight people. Rose was unable to seek shelter in time to avoid the tornado and rode out the storm in a mobile home with four other people. The mobile home was damaged, however, the people survived. BY NATE BILLINGS, THE OKLAHOMAN

Gov. Brad Henry talks with Sue Rose while surveying damage at the Bar K Mobile Home Park in Lone Grove, Okla., Wednesday, February 11, 2009. On Tuesday, February 10, 2009, a tornado moved through Lone Grove killing at least eight people. Rose was unable to seek shelter in time to avoid the tornado and rode out the storm in a mobile home with four other people. The mobile home was damaged, however, the people survived. BY NATE BILLINGS, THE OKLAHOMAN

Dennis Parker holds his granddaughter, Brooklyn Hickman, 3, while sifting through belongings from his destroyed mobile home at the Bar K Mobile Home Park in Lone Grove, Okla., Wednesday, February 11, 2009. On Tuesday, February 10, 2009, a tornado moved through Lone Grove killing at least nine people. BY NATE BILLINGS, THE OKLAHOMAN
Dennis Parker holds his granddaughter, Brooklyn Hickman, 3, while sifting through belongings from his destroyed mobile home at the Bar K Mobile Home Park in Lone Grove, Okla., Wednesday, February 11, 2009. On Tuesday, February 10, 2009, a tornado moved through Lone Grove killing at least nine people. BY NATE BILLINGS, THE OKLAHOMAN

Dennis Parker holds his granddaughter, Brooklyn Hickman, 3, while sifting through belongings from his destroyed mobile home at the Bar K Mobile Home Park in Lone Grove, Okla., Wednesday, February 11, 2009. On Tuesday, February 10, 2009, a tornado moved through Lone Grove killing at least eight people. BY NATE BILLINGS, THE OKLAHOMAN

Tammie Rose searches for items to salvage from the destroyed mobile home in which her daughter, Shawna Inlow, used to live in Lone Grove, Okla., Wednesday, February 11, 2009. On Tuesday, February 10, 2009, a tornado moved through Lone Grove killing at least nine people. Inlow and her three boys were able to ride  out the storm safely in Rose's cellar. BY NATE BILLINGS, THE OKLAHOMAN
Tammie Rose searches for items to salvage from the destroyed mobile home in which her daughter, Shawna Inlow, used to live in Lone Grove, Okla., Wednesday, February 11, 2009. On Tuesday, February 10, 2009, a tornado moved through Lone Grove killing at least nine people. Inlow and her three boys were able to ride out the storm safely in Rose's cellar. BY NATE BILLINGS, THE OKLAHOMAN

Tammie Rose searches for items to salvage from the destroyed mobile home in which her daughter, Shawna Inlow, used to live in Lone Grove, Okla., Wednesday, February 11, 2009. On Tuesday, February 10, 2009, a tornado moved through Lone Grove killing at least eight people. Inlow and her three boys were able to ride  out the storm safely in Rose’s cellar. BY NATE BILLINGS, THE OKLAHOMAN

Neda Wilson reacts as she looks at her sister's destroyed home following deadly storms around Lone Grove, Okla., Feb. 11, 2009. By John Clanton, The Oklahoman
Neda Wilson reacts as she looks at her sister's destroyed home following deadly storms around Lone Grove, Okla., Feb. 11, 2009. By John Clanton, The Oklahoman

Neda Wilson reacts as she looks at her sister’s destroyed home following deadly storms the day before around Lone Grove, Okla., Feb. 11, 2009. By John Clanton, The Oklahoman

To see a photo gallery of more pictures from Lone Grove and photos from damage in the metro area, click here.

-Nate Billings

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by Nate Billings
Photographer
Nate Billings never planned to become a photojournalist. He took pictures as a hobby growing up and worked as an assistant for his father, a commercial still and video photographer, but chose to study English Literature in college. Billings did...
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by Steve Sisney
Photographer
Steve Sisney—married Brenda Joyce (Pierce) of Velma, Oklahoma in 1977. They have three children—Brent, Jason, and Tana; and four grandchildren. Sisney has been a staff photographer for The Oklahoman since 1987. He has photographed presidents...
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