Severe storms damage nursing home in Devine

Residents forced to take shelter


DEVINE, Texas – Around 3 a.m., rain pelted down and winds tore through the city of Devine. Residents at Devine Nursing and Rehabilitation Center were put on high alert.

"The wind was very very high and it was frightening because it hit very fast." said Karen Kohlleppel, the nursing home director, "We evacuated into the hallways and got them behind the fire doors."

No one was hurt but the damage around the nursing home was significant.

Much of the area was without power due to damaged utility poles, the air conditioning system for the nursing home was torn apart and a nearby storage shed was ripped out of the ground. Kohlleppel said gas pipes were also damaged and had to be shut down.

Many people in the area were left questioning if it was a tornado that caused the damage.

"I think it was a twister, myself, just by looking at it," said Kohlleppel.

Rick Campsey, who works as an insurance agent nearby said, "It was probably a small twister that didn't really set down and do a lot of damage."

The National Weather Service has not confirmed any tornadoes in the area so the damage was likely caused by straight line winds.

"We're very blessed that it turned out as well as it did to have gone through something like this," said Kohlleppel