'Hurricane Elvis' Remembered Ten Years Later

'Hurricane Elvis' Remembered Ten Years Later

Residents of one of the hardest hit areas in Memphis remember the destructive wind storm.
MEMPHIS, TN (localmemphis.com) - We’re fast approaching the 10 year anniversary of "Hurricane Elvis", the destructive thunderstorms that brought winds over 100mph to parts of the Mid-South.

Areas of midtown Memphis were some of the hardest hit, especially Linden Avenue.

Betty Krone has lived in her Linden Ave. home since 1967. She says she’s never witnessed anything like what she saw July 22, 2003. She relives what happened first thing that Tuesday morning,

“I woke and heard things banging against the house, and I got up and wandered to the door and saw terrible sight outside.”

The storm came in and left quickly, but not before doing major damage and earning Krone’s street the nickname of ‘Disaster Avenue”.

Betty’s house was no exception. “Every window in this house was broken, parts of the roof were gone, water came dripping through the ceiling (then) the ceiling fell. It was pretty gruesome.”

Meteorologically speaking, this storm is called a derecho, a long line of thunderstorms producing intense winds in excess of 80mph.

Now, meteorologists are using data from the event to try to better forecast these difficult storms.

Warning Coordination Meteorologist Benjamin Schott says, “Instability is having a lot of cold air over the top of a lot of warm air at the surface, and all those things were in place that day and in large quantities.”

It was a prefect weather recipe with other meteorological variables also falling into place that created a massive mess during the morning rush hour.

When asked if it felt like it’s been 10 years, Krone replied, “Yes and no, I just hope it never happens again.”

Schott feels the same way. “As a warning forecaster, you look back at an event like that and you wonder if you could have ever seen something that could’ve told you that this was going to be that bad of an event.”
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