If you live in North Texas long enough you will come to know someone who has been devastated by a tornado. The most recent local tornado disaster occurred December 26, 2015, in Rowlett and Garland, where over 1,000 homes were destroyed and 11 people were killed. In 1953, a tornado that struck Waco resulted in 114 deaths and the destruction of 1,600 homes and other structures.
Dr. Marlene Bradford, author of Texas Tornadoes, The Lone Star State’s Deadliest Twisters, will be at the Allen Public Library at 7:30 p.m., Thursday, March 15, to discuss the history of Texas tornadoes and tornado forecasting.
Dr. Bradford has spent most of her life in Tornado Alley, that area of the United States most frequently impacted by these devastating storms. After earning a degree in chemistry from Union University in Jackson, Tennessee, (where, in 2008, a tornado ironically devastated the campus), Dr. Bradford taught, served as a minister’s wife, and earned an M.A. in history from Southwest Texas State University (now Texas State) and a Ph.D. in U.S. history from Texas A&M University.
The story of the development of a tornado watch and warning system was the subject of her doctoral dissertation, which was entitled Scanning the Skies: A History of Tornado Forecasting published by the University of Oklahoma Press. Dr. Bradford is also the author of Arkansas Tornadoes: The Natural State’s Deadliest Twisters, numerous journal and encyclopedia articles, and is the co-editor of Notable Natural Disasters.
Copies of Dr. Bradford’s books will be available for purchase and signatures.
The library is located at 300 N. Allen Dr. Sponsored by the Allen Public Library, the program is free. Call 214-509-4911 for more information.