Sirens halt Family Arena graduation

ST. CHARLES (KSDK) - There were some frightening moments inside the Family Arena as strong storms blew through St. Charles. The Francis Howell North High School graduation was underway. And, as each student crossed the stage, strong storms inched closer.

"We were about halfway through the students and the tornado sirens went off," said graduate Michael Hamilton.

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"All of the sudden we could hear the tornado sirens and everyone just sort of got real quiet," said one of the graduate's relatives, Maggie Thornton.

The students were told to take cover under the stairways. Everyone else was urged to move into the main concourses and restrooms.

"A bunch of us have apps on our phone, we were pulling them out, checking the radar, checking to see what's going on," said one of the graduate's stepfathers, Jason Vogelsberg.

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After about 20 minutes, everyone got the all clear and returned to their seats. But then…

"Then the tornado sirens went off again!" Hamilton said.

So, once again, everyone was told to get to a safe place.

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"A bunch of us looking at the radar just decided to sit in our seats and wait it out," Vogelsberg said.

Then, another 20 minutes, and the ceremony would be underway again.

"The second half after the tornado sirens went off they went through the names pretty fast," Thornton said.

And with the storm finally clear, the graduates were able to finally finish what they started. There was not any damage nor any injuries reported at the Arena as a result of the storms.


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