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WINTERSET, Iowa — March 5 remains a dark day in Madison County history after an EF-4 tornado killed six people outside of Winterset last year. The community tried their best to find hope in the darkness for the one-year anniversary on Sunday.

A full house was packed inside of New Bridge Church in Winterset for a remembrance of the tornado. Several speakers addressed the crowd, including tornado survivor Judy Clark, whose husband Rodney died in the storm.

“I was there, I saw it coming, and then you all were right there behind me to come and find me,” Clark said.

The six victims of the tornado were:

  • Rodney Clark, 64
  • Cecilia Lloyd, 72
  • Melissa Bazley, 63
  • Michael Bolger, 37
  • Kinlee Bolger, 5
  • Owen Bolger, 2

Madison County Emergency Management Director Diogenes Ayala said the county still has a lot of healing to do.

“People are still suffering, people are still having insurance issues, and people just want to understand the community is still there,” Ayala said. “This is a nice event to have, but we’re going to continue to do the healing. It may take years.”

Clark said the support from the community has helped her manage the tragedy of losing her husband as best as she can.

“A heartfelt thank you, Madison County, for taking care of all of us that were in this tornado,” Clark told the crowd. “Not just me, but all of us.”