Strong storms brought heavy winds, hail, and widespread damage to much of North Texas over the weekend. Despite damage being more focused on the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex, meteorologists said Texoma was not left unscathed, with Denison taking the local brunt of the damage.
The storms rolled through the area in two phases: overnight precipitation and wind late Saturday and a second wave of heavy rain during Sunday afternoon.
“Unfortunately, when small storm cells group up, they tend to gather strength and you can see heavy winds,” National Weather Service Meteorologist Monique Sellers said. “That is exactly what we saw with the storms this weekend.”
Sellers said she wasn’t certain how strong the storms across Texoma were as reports from the region were few compared to the Metroplex. However, the reports that have been given included recordings of straight-line winds between 60 and 70 miles hour.
Sellers also said some parts of the region saw hail of up to one-and-a-half inches in diameter.
The weather service is also investigating some reports of potential tornadoes connected to the storms, but said any tornadic activity would have been low in power and relatively short.
Grayson County Emergency Management Coordinator Sarah Somers sent reports from Denison to the NWS for analysis, but had not received confirmation on a tornado as of Monday afternoon. Somers said vegetative damage seemed widespread during the storms, but structural damage was seen most prominently in Denison.
“Essentially, it seemed pretty isolated to the Crawford and Armstrong intersection area,” Denison Emergency Management Coordinator Morgan Metcalf said.
The former Kroger grocery building was one of the structures that saw damage late Saturday night, Metcalf said. Two of the large plate-glass windows at the front of the store appear to have been blown in during the storm, leaving the storefront open. The building was empty at the time as Kroger closed the location in April.
Waples Memorial United Methodist Church, located across from the Kroger building on Chestnut, also saw some damage from the storm, officials said. Missions and Outreach Coordinator Micah Blevins said the storms blew out the power to the building late Saturday, but Oncor was able to restore power in time for church services Sunday. The building still has no air conditioning in the sanctuary, she said.
Another building that saw damage was a warehouse owned by the Salvation Army in the 300 block of Armstrong. Metcalf said the damage seemed to be mainly to the front windows. Beyond the structural damage, Denison Fire Rescue received a small number of calls related to debris and power-related issues.
In the week ahead, the region could see more chances for heavy weather as multiple storm systems are expected to blow through the region, Sellers said. The next chance for rainfall will come Tuesday and into Wednesday as a system moves in from the north-northwest. Additional storms are expected to move into the area over the weekend, she added.
“Right now, we are still trying to assess the threats that could come with these storms,” she said.
Michael Hutchins is a reporter for the Herald Democrat. He can be reached at MHutchins@HeraldDemocrat.com.