Updated: Saturday, 03 Oct 2009, 9:43 PM EDT
Published : Friday, 02 Oct 2009, 5:20 PM EDT
WINDSOR LOCKS, Conn. (WWLP) - Saturday marked the 30th anniversary of one of the most
destructive tornadoes to ever hit New England.
At around 3 p.m. on Wednesday, October 3, 1979 an F4 tornado with winds in excess of 200 mph touched down in Poquonock in the town of Windsor, Connecticut and moved up along Route 75 into Feeding Hills.
The tornado all but wiped out the Bradley Air Museum in Windsor Locks, Connecticut.
Twenty-five planes were tossed around like toys and destroyed and an entire roof was ripped off a hangar.
Sixty-five homes were destroyed in the tornado's 11 mile path of destruction.
In Feeding Hills the Granger Elementary School was shut down for weeks due to water and structural damage.
The National Weather Service, which was at Bradley International Airport at that time, never issued a warning for the tornado because it developed too close to the radar to be detected.
Sue Banks was one of the survivors of the tornado and lives in the area where the tornado first touched down.
She was interviewed by 22News after her home had been destroyed on that fateful day.
“It appeared that the sofa bed went from the corner that's now empty, flew across the house, slammed into the kitchen wall that wall came down on top of us and it was pitch black we couldn't see the children. We had no idea
what was no idea what was going on,” said Sue Banks of Windsor, Connecticut on October 3, 1979.
Sue and her family have rebuilt their home in the same spot.
Thirty years later she still vividly remembers that day.
“Everything was just so fast, so intense, so much power, so loud but you couldn't hear and all of a sudden it was over. It may have lasted 15 seconds. I think the strangest thing I ever saw was they sky. You know you're in the kitchen and then suddenly there's the sky in front of you and I don't know what point I realized it was a tornado but I did and that's what it had to be,” said Sue Banks.
In all, three people lost their lives and 500 people were injured.
The tornado caused around $420 million dollars in damage, and is ranked as the 6th costliest tornado to touchdown in the United States.