CHICOPEE, Mass. - One of the worst tornadoes ever to touch down in New England occurred 65 years ago on June 9th, 1953.
It’s known as the Worcester Tornado and it first touched down near the small town of Petersham, just northeast of the Quabbin Reservoir at 4:25 p.m.
It continued its path of destruction through Worcester County before turning just west of
Worcester in the town of Holden.
The tornado then began tearing up northern sections of the city of Worcester as an F4 tornado.
Winds were estimated at over 250 mph as the path neared one mile in diameter.
Assumption College took a direct hit with some of the brick buildings on the campus being leveled.
The tornado continued eastward, and finally dissipated just west of Framingham.
The Worcester Tornado was on the ground for 84 minutes and left a 46 mile path of destruction.
94 People died and over 1,000 people were injured. 4,000 homes and buildings were damaged or destroyed.
The damage in 1953 dollars was a reported at around $52 million.
Debris carried by the storm was found as far away as the Outer Cape.
The first warning for the tornado did not come until 5:45 p.m. by then it was too late and the tornado had dissipated.