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From the archives: Remembering Palm Sunday 50 years later

Amid the ruins: An unidentified woman stands amid the wreckage of a home in LaGrange County. The home was gone and only the furniture remained. The scene was re-enacted scores of times throughout La Grange County and other hard-hit areas in the paths of tornadoes April 11, Palm Sunday, 1965. LaGrange County recorded about 20 dead and scores injured in the storm.
Bowlers injured at Berne: Several bowlers were reportedly injured as the tornado ripped through Emick Bowl on U.S. 27 just north of Berne. The bowling alley was the northernmost of the buildings destroyed by the storm in April 1965 at Berne. Cars parked around the building were scattered by the winds, and most were heavily damaged by flying debris. Three children, who apparently fled from a nearby mobile home that was destroyed, were founded crouched in a field near the rear of the alley.
18 injured at party: A total of 18 members of the Graber family were reported injured when the storm struck during a birthday party at the Kedwin Graber farm home on Indiana 118 east of Berne. The family heard the storm coming and ran for the basement, but the house was pushed off its foundation and tons of debris were dropped into the basement. Most of the injuries were minor, although some were said to be of a serious nature.
Landmark church destroyed: The Shore Mennonite Church, a landmark on U.S. 20 about 8 miles west of LaGrange, was reduced to rubble a tornado spread death and destruction in April 1965 in western LaGrange County. Had the tornado, which struck at 6:44 p.m., come half an hour later, collapse of the masonry church probably would have taken a heavy toll on people gathering for a 7:30 p.m. church service, members said. Two families ran to the church for refuge, and at least one person was injured.
Fury of the storm: The Shore Mennonite Church in the LaGrange area is evidence of the storm's full fury. This is a scene that was repeatedly found in the areas hit hardest by the twisters that snaked out of the sky on the evening of Palm Sunday. A number of mobile home parks in this and other areas also were victims of the storm's fury in April 1965.
Storm path like battlefield: Destruction brought to western LaGrange County by a tornado April 11, 1965, equaled or surpassed that of heavy artillery fire as this picture illustrates. Before the storm, the view overlooked a peaceful country cemetery at the Shore Mennonite Church. Wreckage of the church is in the right background.
Winds tangle vehicles: Two vehicles and a farm tractor, heaped by tornadic winds in the Shore community on the evening of April 11, 1965, are a monument to the storm's terrific force. The picture was taken at the home of Golan Yoder, a short distance east of Indiana 5 on U.S. Highway 20. During the violence of the storm, cars rolled and bounced across the fields like tennis balls, some for 500 feet or more.
Searchers comb storm path: This scene, taken in the Shore community west of LaGrange early April 12, 1965, was typical as informal rescue teams searched for storm victims and valuables in the path of the Palm Sunday tornado that killed at least 19 people and injured 70 or more in western LaGrange County. In the background is rubble of the Shore Mennonite Church destroyed by the storm. At the moment the picture was taken, the searchers were looking for money reported left in the home.
Picking up the pieces: Disheartened homeowners in all areas of the state where the destructive tornadoes hit returned to their homes April 12, 1965, and began the task of picking up what little could be salvaged. This home in LaGrange County was one of several blown away by the storm, and about the only things salvageable were what was left in the basement.
Shattered remains of home: This picture might have been taken at any of the scores of homes that were shattered by a Palm Sunday tornado in the LaGrange County area. Parts of the house can be seen lodged in the tree. In some places, family members and friends picked through the wreckage, but in others, debris was left where it lay. National Guard troops were patrolling hard-hit areas to keep down looting.
Truck upended in Linngrove: A heavy truck, blown from where it was parked between two buildings, wound up in a tree at the northern edge of Linngrove, a small community about 5 miles east of Berne. The truck was parked between a house and large garage housing several other trucks. All the nearby buildings were destroyed.
Supermarket guarded: A National Guardsman keeps watch over the demolished IGA supermarket on U.S. 27 in Berne. The store owner and his family were reportedly parked outside when the tornado struck and rode out the tornado in their car, receiving only minor injuries. National Guardsmen were out throughout the entire disaster area in an attempt to deter looting. They were also called into action to help in the search and care for casualties after the April 1965 storm.
Twisted mobile home frame: The twisted steel frame of a mobile home lies alongside a highway north of Berne. Other parts of the home were splintered and scattered. Several people were in the drive-in restaurant in the upper part of the photo when the storm struck in April 1965, and one family stayed in the car at the rear of the building. The car's windows were shattered by the family escaped with only minor injuries. The mobile home was one of several parked in the field near the restaurant.
Silos survive: Only the grain silos in the background remained untouched by outbreak of deadly tornadoes that struck northeast Indiana on Palm Sunday 1965. Their location is unrecorded.
Car destroyed: This car at an unrecorded location was no match for the tornado that struck on Palm Sunday 1965.
Assessing the damage: Workers begin sifting through the rubble at an unrecorded location after deadly tornadoes struck northeast Indiana on Palm Sunday 1965.
Building reduced to rubble: A strong tornado leveled this unidentified building on Palm Sunday 1965.
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