More than two decades later, the original owner of a local grocery store in Anthony, Texas remembers the high winds which toppled the roof of his store and killed three people on January 17, 1996.
Adrian Emilio Baca comes from a long line of grocery men. His father opened the first “La Feria” on Stanton Street in South El Paso 75 years ago. Baca later decided to open his own store in Anthony after leaving the military.
Baca told KTSM he still has a vivid memory of the incident.
“It was a horrible thing it was a freak storm that came through the mountains,” he said. “No matter how much insurance you have, that will never make up for the loss of lives.”
According to the National Weather Service, there were 75 mile per hour winds reported that day.
Baca said the incident caused him as well as other business owners in Anthony to reinforce their buildings.
“We have stronger breezes, stronger winds, sand storms, they’re a little hard to cope with but they are,” said Baca.
The grocery store was temporarily closed after the incident and reopened later on. It is still owned by Baca, but managed by Lowe’s.