Disasters: The Cruelest Month

Out of sullen spring skies over four Midwestern states last week came a succession of killer tornadoes. The twist ers hit Illinois, Missouri, Michigan and Indiana. Scattering cars and buses like playthings, reducing office buildings and whole residential sections to rubble, the tornadoes' lash took more than 50 lives, injured 1,500, and destroyed up to $50 million worth of property.

Worst hit were the Chicago suburb of Oak Lawn and the nearby town of Belvidere. At Oak Lawn, a swirling funnel smashed a shopping center, ripped up a trailer park and slammed into a roller-skating rink filled with youngsters. It...

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