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After the deaths of two campers in a tornado, McCormick’s Creek State Park will reopen on Friday



Owen County, Indiana – Two individuals were killed when an EF-3 tornado tore through the park’s campground at McCormick’s Creek State Park on Thursday. The park is anticipated to reopen on Friday.

At the park’s entrance are crosses decorated with flowers in memory of Brett and Wendy Kincaid. When the tornado struck, the couple was camped out in a trailer at the park’s campsite.

Roads to the campground had to be cleared, which took park officials more than two days. During the storm, hundreds or even thousands of trees fell.

Initial rescue attempts at the campground, according to the Indiana Department of Natural Resources, had to be conducted nearly exclusively on foot.

“At that time that night, in the middle of the night, those roadways weren’t open and so we were bringing people in by foot,” Lt. Angela Goldman said. “All the rescue, all the searching, all of that was done by foot.”

According to park officials, 38 campgrounds were occupied that evening. When the storm started to approach, announcements, according to DNR authorities, were issued to campers.

Since then, workers have been down trees and making their way.

“I think normalcy is going to be long ways off,” Lt. Goldman said.

According to Goldman, the Hotel and the Park will reopen on Friday.

“The campground itself is going to be closed until at least the end of April and possibly substantially longer just based on how much clean up their is to do,” Goldman said. “There are a handful of cabins on site and those are being assessed individually and we’ll open those as we can.”

Those who made reservations at the campground are being contacted by DNR authorities in an effort to reschedule them.

The two campers’ deaths are still under investigation.