Tornado rips through Wilkes County and surrounding areas

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A tornado touched down in Wilkes County, severely damaging parts of the North Wilkesboro area.

WILKES COUNTY, N.C. — A tornado rolled through Wilkes County Thursday night, damaging parts of the North Wilkesboro area. 

Until 11 p.m., most of the Piedmont Triad was under a Tornado Watch. The National Weather Service confirmed that a tornado touched down in Wilkes County. 

WFMY News 2 received viewer photos showing a BP gas station damaged by the storm just outside North Wilkesboro. 

We spoke to three woman who were working at the store when the storm hit. 

One woman said she saw a customer fly into the front of the store as the awning lifted up.

“I seen the awning fly up and it ricocheted to the left as soon as it hit my car,” Michaelia Crystal recalled.

Another woman said she was hanging on for dear life as the wind picked her up off the floor. 

“I’m just very thankful to be here for my son because he needs me more than anything, Ashyia Freeman said, “God kept me here for a reason because it could’ve taken all of us out of here, you can see from the damage.”

The third worker said she was attempting to closing the store and saw her friend flying in the air.

“One big thing that I’ve learned is to not take life for granted because it can literally be taken in minutes,” Jessica Beaver shared. 

The assistant manager of the BP said the gas station will be closed until further notice due to concerns of the roof collapsing. 

“I’m glad that everyone is ok, that’s the most important part,” Leann Sebastian said, “The store can be rebuilt.”

The tornado also spun by Wilkesboro United Methodist Church, where multiple trees fell near the church. The grounds and parking lot were also damaged. 

The church said there was a Girl Scout troop inside when it happened; fortunately, everyone was okay.

Staff at Rose Glen Village, a Retirement and Assisted Living facility in Wilkesboro, said two windows were blown out, and some roofing came off. The staff said no one was hurt.

North Wilkesboro Fire Department has received several calls about downed trees and power lines. They said most damage is in Moravian Falls off NC-16 and NC-18. 

Surry County reported multiple downed trees. 

Emergency crews also responded to downed trees on Denny Road in King.

Stay with WFMY News 2 for your latest weather updates and power outages. 

Text your storm photos to 336-379-5775. Please include your name and city/town.



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