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May 21st,2004 

Reported by Mike Hissam Reporting for tornadochaser.net news

     Here it was just another day in Lordstown,Ohio (the site of one of the great May 31st,1985 tornado outbreaks that raveged this area years prior). And previously the night before here we had from 3:05 a.m. to almost 6:00 a.m. this morning a line of very severe electrical storms (the usual variety of severe thunderstorm experiences with wind/hail/lightning you'd expect) by which usually out here in the Northeast Ohio area after you have one episode like that from the night before,you usually are good for almost 3 days of sunny weather and nothing else before you have another round of storms. Because of this I didn't think anyone was expecting what was to follow.

   Yet today it was rather humid (very hot) and windy,and on this day I was supposed to go to a little league baseball game (at 6 p.m.). Then at around almost 4:45 in the afternoon I was checking "The Weather Channel" radar on my cellphone from taking an afternoon nap when I saw that the entire radar was "lit up" like a Christmas tree as it appeared to be almost right upon us. Out of panic I immediately got up and looked outside and it was incredibly black to the west such as I have not seen it in years outside. It was as dark to the west,like the sun had gone down and it was nighttime,only worse it was coming my way! I immediately called my fiancee to tell her to stay at her office and take cover then I went upstairs quickly to see if any of the kids were still in the house and to have them take cover downstairs in the basement. When I got upstairs there was only the oldest daughter in the house and she actually came flying out of her room in a panic saying there was a "tornado warning on tv!". I sent her down to the basement while I grabbed my webcam to take these shots as you see here.

WallcloudLordstownOhio 5-21-04  Mike Hissam

     I took these pictures with a Logitech Clicksmart 510 web camera and I feel these are a good example of a wallcloud that was part of the storm that prompted the actual "tornado warning for Trumbull County in Ohio until 5:30 p.m."-(as said on the National Weather Service). I have been through a few tornadoes here before (including the notorious one I just mentioned about from back in 1985) but I tell you that what you see here in these pictures,this wallcloud and the surrounding clouds were moving in so fast (local news said that the storm was moving close 65 mph!) that you literally had to keep moving your head backward to keep up with it (strange).WallcloudLordstownOhio 5-21-04  Mike Hissam

Also in these photos (and I am not sure you can make it out or not because of the color) there was a very ominous blue/green haze from behind this wallcloud (which usually means high wind and hail). And I'd say at just over the 5 minute mark of taking these photos,it just "exploded outside",with high wind and hail as I was watching hail fall the size of quarters to slightly larger for a brief time.For about 25 minutes it just was hailing (sounding like stones hitting the house),then the daughter said "the windows were rattling" and you could hear an actual whistling and the sound of a like "freight train" going over head (or around us).
WallcloudLordstownOhio 5-21-04  Mike Hissam  

     What you see here in these photos,this wallcloud actually just went (and I mean just) a little south of us then hitting us directly. I was pointed very slightly to the southwest in these photos. Hope you like these. Kind of had us all here remembering that fateful Friday back on May 31st,1985 again.....thanks!
Reported by Mike Hissam Reporting for tornadochaser.net news

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