April 21, 2005
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meteorologist & stormchaser J.R. Hehnly
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April 21, 2005 - Southeast Kansas, Parsons Tornado

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I met up in Norman to caravan with Chad Lawson, Shane Adams, and Jo Radel. We left right around noon with an initial target of Chanute, Kansas.

Along the way Chad's car  had a tire go out. We stopped in Stroud and he purchased a new one.

After arriving in Chanute there was convection going up to our west and south. We got online and determined the south storm was already taking on supercell characteristics. The storm was 25 miles south of us, due west of Parsons. We headed that way, taking a jog to the east to get in front of it north of Parsons.

From the east side we could see lowerings on the back side of the storm. We took gravel roads west to get a closer look. We stopped on the west side of Parsons Lake and observed rapid rotation just to our west.

A large funnel came down nearly on top of me. Shane was on the radio yelling at me to get out of there as I watched the funnel pass over and then start pulling trees north of me.

The tornado eventually got a classic look to it and remained on the ground for several minutes as we drove east to get a better vantage point.

It eventually roped out leaving a rapidly spinning tube to our north, meanwhile a new lowering was rotating just to our east.

This one had lots of rapid motion and occasional funnel clouds.

One of the funnels finally connected to the ground. Initially the condensation was not continuous with part visible on the ground and part aloft. when the condensation finally did connect the action on the ground was very violent.

Another tornado touches down just over the hill in front of us.

This one brought trees down blocking the only access across the river. I tried to pull a tree out of the way but it was too heavy. Fortunately some locals had chainsaws and removed the part blocking our progress. Chad lost another tire to the downed branches.

We eventually called the chase in Pittsburg as darkness fell.

April 5, 2005 April 10, 2005 April 21, 2005 May 12, 2005 June 4, 2005 June 5, 2005 June 12, 2005 June 16, 2005 September 13, 2005

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