WAVERLY, Va. -- The deadly tornado that tore through the town of Waverly on Wednesday afternoon was rated an EF1, by the National Weather Service. The Waverly tornado's wind speed topped out at between 100 and 110 mph. It touched down at 2:31 p.m. and for 10 minutes twisted a nine-mile path of destruction -- knocking down trees and damaging homes.
Three people in one mobile home were killed when the tornado picked up the home. A two-year-old boy, a 50-year-old man and a 26-year-old man -- lost their lives, Virginia State Police spokeswoman Corinne Geller said. Their bodies were found about 300 yards away from where their mobile home once sat. While the names of the storm victims have not yet officially been released.
While family and friends of the storm victims mourn their losses, others in town are tasked with clean up.
"I mean it's just what do you do in a situation like this, clean up," Waverly business owner Jonathon Rowley said. "It's just so much work to do. It doesn't look like it'll ever end. We need all the help we can get."
Virginia National Guard soldiers will help clear and clean areas of Virginia hit hard by tornadoes. The Guard will focus its efforts in Essex, Richmond, Westmoreland, Sussex and Patrick Counties. Waverly is part of Sussex.
Rowley was in his home with the tornado touched down.
"It sounded like a freight train, like a whistle coming right through town. It was horrible," he said. "The whole house was shaking while I was in it."