Ohio church severely damaged in Friday’s storm

July 1, 2012

Ohio

First Presbyterian Church in Cambridge, Ohio, received significant damage during a storm Friday night, June 29, that left Ohio Gov. John Kasich declaring a state of emergency and seeking federal disaster aid.

WTRF.com, the website for the Wheeling, W. Va. television station, quoted the church’s pastor, the Rev. Keith Leach, as saying the future of the church building is unclear. He said church members hope to rebuild once the cost of repairs is known.

Parishioner Connie Humphrey told the television station that Friday is “the only night of the week things aren’t going on at the church. Hours before, we had 15 high school kids in the sanctuary singing around the piano and a group of their parents down the hall beneath rehearsing for the Fourth of July concert.”

The National Weather Service has not ruled out a tornado as the cause of the damage. Straight line winds in excess of 60 miles per hour also could have damaged the building, according to weather officials

Nearby churches offered office space and other help to the damaged church, which was dedicated at its present site in September 1957.

Cambridge is a city of about 11,000 people in southeast Ohio. It’s within the bounds of Muskingum Valley Presbytery.

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