At age nine, Ellie Turling was a midfielder on one of the best girl soccer teams in Missouri, the Fairmont Barnstormers. In fact, she was the best midfielder in the state. But Ilana Johnson from the Ashton Lighting was a close second. Tornados are a regular part of life in Missouri - especially in the spring. Ellie's dad, Tom, was a local reporter for the Missouri Weather Service, so he knew a lot about storms and tornados. At first, Ellie thought her dad's storm chasing was interesting - until last year's incident. Since then, Ellie's dad had come to be known as Tornado Tom. He loved the nickname, but Ellie wasn't so pleased. She thought the nickname was silly and she was afraid that her dad would be known as the town weirdo. But after the events at this year's state championship, Ellie wouldn't have to worry about that anymore.
"Tornado Tom" was written by Jim Westcott and published by Rubicon Publishing as an elementary school reader.