Tornadoes Rip Through the Midwest, and the Internet

04_10_Tornado_03
Eloy Hernandez of Rochelle, Illinois looks for his belongings in the remains of his home on April 10, 2015. Paul Michna/Daily Herald/AP

At least two tornadoes hit north central Illinois Thursday, says the National Weather Service, which drew on information from trained storm spotters and chasers as well as radar and environmental evidence. One tornado on Thursday evening caused severe damage in Rochelle, Kirkland and Fairdale, where one death and several injuries have been reported.

"At least two long-lived supercell thunderstorms produced these tornadoes, or family of tornadoes," the National Weather Service said, and the Chicago Tribune reported that in Fairdale, "every single home was affected by the storm, officials said, with some crushed down to their foundation and others left standing with no damage except broken windows."

04_10_Tornado_02
A sign lies on the ground in Fairdale, Illinois on April 10 after a tornado passed through the area. Teresa Crawford/AP
04_10_Tornado_01
Fairdale, Illinois lies in ruins after a tornado blew through the area. At least two tornadoes churned through six north-central Illinois counties, according to the National Weather Service. ABC 7 Chicago/AP
04_10_Tornado_04
Supercell thunderstorms produced a large tornado that touched down Thursday night in northern Illinois, killing one person and injuring seven others in one tiny community as severe weather pummeled the Midwest. Every home in the town was affected, authorities said. DeKalb County Sheriff Roger Scott said in a news release that approximately 15 to 20 were totally destroyed. John Starks/Daily Herald/AP

As extreme weather ravaged parts of the Midwest, it produced a storm of tweets and posts to Facebook and YouTube as journalists, meteorologists and residents alike documented the events and their aftermath.

Rochelle, IL

Posted by Stephanie Sego Curtis on Thursday, April 9, 2015

One more image of the Ashton/Rochelle tornado from last night. #ilwx #tornado pic.twitter.com/EjRLClT3xW

— Tom Purdy (@TomPurdyWI) April 10, 2015

Lightning strikes as a tornado crosses I-39, Rochelle, IL ~7 PM CDT (via Bruce Jones/@WGNTV) https://t.co/AUsxXc7shE pic.twitter.com/5YXMAM6QFF

— Storm Chase Team at Penn State (@StormChaseTeam) April 10, 2015

Wow another incredible image of the large destructive tornado near Rochelle, IL via Nate Rigs. pic.twitter.com/JJLrLa6aJT

— Adrian Linares (@AdrianLinares28) April 10, 2015

Our @pd_cameraman got pix of funnel cloud over South Perryville near Route 20 at approx 6:40. @NWSChicago pic.twitter.com/7jQMZxkngn

— Register Star (@rrstar) April 9, 2015

Town of Fairdale, IL closed down as search and rescue resumes this morning after a tornado last night. pic.twitter.com/yZi5urqbIc

— Mike Bettes (@mikebettes) April 10, 2015

Bye bye Fairdale.. pic.twitter.com/xzC8xcINjZ

— McMikey (@MCusack_20) April 10, 2015

I'm no surveyor but I'll take opening bets at EF-4 “@DMeteorologist: Fairdale, IL pic.twitter.com/XO5nAfrB2U

— ☈ Chris Jackson ☈ (@ChrisJacksonSC) April 10, 2015

Extensive tornado damage in Fairdale, IL. Live on @weatherchannel all day. pic.twitter.com/UmKvsO1LBX

— Mike Bettes (@mikebettes) April 10, 2015

More damage from illinois #tornado pic.twitter.com/mAB4EEJ63M

— Mike Bettes (@mikebettes) April 10, 2015

There's little left... pic.twitter.com/bD8SZG3L45

— Ben Bradley (@BenBradleyTV) April 10, 2015

pic.twitter.com/hmYLCNbao2

— Rockford Fire (@RockfordFire) April 10, 2015

The tornado damage to a restaurant in Rochelle, Ill., called Grubsteakers, where a dozen people took refuge in a storm cellar and were rescued without injuries soon afterward.

4-10-15 Tornado
Grubsteakers Restaurant at the corner of Interstate 64 and 251 was damaged by a tornado. D.J. Moore/Facebook

#Rochelle #tornado Before & After Grubsteakers restaurant HT @1023TheCoyote #ilwx pic.twitter.com/809ZaDG19y

— Adam Dean (@WxDiz) April 10, 2015

Another photo from Grubsteakers on 64 & 251. #Rochelle #ilwx pic.twitter.com/JRLcMKOM4C

— 23 WIFR (@23WIFR) April 10, 2015

Outside Grubsteakers in Rochelle. pic.twitter.com/s8R7aSq8rF

— Jon Seidel (@SeidelContent) April 10, 2015