Monday, May 12, 2008

AP article recounts death of Rountree family

The deaths of three members of the Rountree family of Joplin during Saturday's tornado are recounted in an article posted on the Kansas City Star website:

(Rick) Rountree, his wife Kathy, their 13-year-old son Clayton and Ruby Bilke, Kathy Rountree’s 76-year-old mother, were driving to a friend’s wedding Saturday night when the tornado hit the family’s passenger van on a rural highway about eight miles north of Seneca, said Larry Bilke, Ruby’s son.

With little warning, Ruby Bilke died barely 100 yards from the barn where she was born, her son said. The Rountree family left their home in Joplin, 15 miles away, and picked up Bilke at her home in the county in an effort to arrive early for a 7 p.m. wedding, where Rick Rountree was scheduled to sing.

“They were on the road when the warnings came,” said Larry Bilke, whose own home just one mile from the crash site was unscathed.

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