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April 21st will mark the 50 year anniversary of the F4 tornado that leveled parts of Belvidere Il.
Belvidere, Illinois experienced a powerful and deadly F4 tornado. It’s 240 MPH winds ravaged the southeastern side of this small community killing 24 and injuring hundreds. Many killed were small school children. The tornado struck at approximately 3:50PM just as high school kids were leaving school and loading on 16 school buses parked at the high school and already loaded with elementary school children.
The half mile wide path of this killer twister hit a major auto factory, a busy hospital, a grocery store packed with afternoon shoppers, a large area of homes and businesses, a high school and 16 fully loaded school buses.
The tornadoes path was approximately 28 miles long touching down in the southwest corner of Boone County, IL and traveled NE into McHenry County before dissipating. In it’s wake, tremendous damage and loss of life.
The 67 Belvidere tornado event was part of the largest tornado outbreak in Illinois history. Some 18 tornadoes touched down that afternoon in Nothern Illinois with Belvidere and Oak Lawn experiencing major F4 tornadoes with high loss of life.
As of 2012 the 67 Belvidere Tornado ranks today as the 6th deadliest weather related disaster in US history.