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Illinois Storm Chaser Recalls Moments Before Chasers Were Killed

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A person looks at cars damaged by a powerful tornado on June 1, 2013 in El Reno, Oklahoma.(Getty/Joe Raedle)

A person looks at cars damaged by a powerful tornado on June 1, 2013 in El Reno, Oklahoma.(Getty/Joe Raedle)

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DE SOTO, Ill. (IRN) – An Illinois man was part of the storm chasing team from which three members were killed by a tornado in Oklahoma.

Meteorologist Tony Laubach is part of the Twistex team – for Tactical Weather Instrumented Sampling in/near Tornadoes Experiment. He’s in De Soto, Ill., near Carbondale. He says he was two miles behind the three men who died, as they collected data on the tornadoes.

Tim Samaras and Carl Young (credit: Ryan McGinns/Facebook)

Tim Samaras and Carl Young (credit: Ryan McGinns/Facebook)

“It’s something we’ve done countless times in the past and have done it successfully and safely and whatever happened on this one is just horrible beyond words,” he said.

Laubach says the data that these storm chasers gather is useful in understanding tornadoes and saving lives in the future, for example by allowing for the design of structures that will withstand tornado winds.

A total of 10 people were killed in that tornado Friday in Oklahoma.

Colorado Storm Chasers Killed In Oklahoma Tornado.

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