Seven members of same family killed in Kentucky tornado; one still missing

A lot of focus has been on Mayfield, but Bowling Green was also hit hard by a separate long-track tornado.
Published: Dec. 15, 2021 at 10:31 AM CST
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BOWLING GREEN, Ky. (WKYT/Gray News) – At least 15 people, including a family of seven, were killed in Bowling Green, Kentucky, during the recent tornado outbreak.

Cierra Bryant told WKYT she often talks to her sister-in-law, Rachel Brown, on Facebook Messenger but didn’t think twice when Brown didn’t respond, assuming she’d lost power.

Bryant said she woke up Saturday morning to startling images of her sister-in-law’s home.

“On the drone video, the drone stops right over their house and pauses. That was terrible,” Bryant said of a house that seven people called home.

Bryant said her mother-in-law’s truck was sitting where their living room would’ve been.

She said Victoria Smith, the 64-year-old family matriarch, was found in a nearby field.

Her son-in-law, Stephen, and daughter, Rachel, were found together with their youngest, 4-year-old Nyles, a quarter-mile away.

Nolynn, 10, was found on a neighbor’s property; while 16-year-old Nariah was found in a creek.

“There was nothing they could’ve held onto, nothing they could’ve tried to shelter themselves, everything is gone,” Bryant said.

Bryant says crews are still looking for 14-year-old Nyssa, and she is praying she’s found.

She says the tight-knit family was loving and taught their children to love other people.

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