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Weather can make columns hard to write

Phelps family trying to lead city tennis progress

Here goes the biggest challenge of the month of May, putting together a tennis column after a wild night and morning thanks to Mother Nature.

For some reason, our 13-year-old Husky Sheba has become panic-stricken every time there is a lightning strike or she hears the guns at Fort Sill.

We’ve tried everything – Thunder shirt, putting her favorite kennel under the table and a variety of meds – but nothing seems to work very well. And as long as the weather is making noise, she’s stomping on us or scratching, mostly at wife Brigitte, seeking comfort.

And then, right when the noise reaches a peak Saturday morning, our phones both go off about a tornado warning and a few seconds later our home alarm does the same.

I grab the phone and check the radar and there is no tornado warning showing. I shook out the cobwebs from the old brain, adjusted the eyes and started exploring other weather options.

Pretty soon we get firmation that there was a tornado near Geronimo but word was out that it was weakening and moving northeast.

So we can relax, right?

Not so, because right then the Lawton tornado sirens start sounding.

That sets up a whole other concern. How can we get both of us and a panic-stricken dog into a closet that is packed with vacuum cleaner, clothes and other miscellaneous items?

After years of following this weather I told Brigitte to not to worry because the storm was already vanishing on radar and spotters said it wasn’t likely going to be a future threat.

Sadly, though, two rural Geronimo families suffered a direct hit but though there were some minor injuries, everyone got out OK.

One thing I learned many years ago while chasing tornadoes with photographers Jeff Dixon and Kenneth Frazier, is you have to respect these storms.

The Lawton Constitution

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