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Coroner says woman missing during tornadoes drowned in creek

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Posted at 10:32 AM, Aug 03, 2019
and last updated 2019-08-03 10:33:34-04

DAYTON, Ohio (AP) — A coroner has determined a 71-year-old woman who went missing shortly before tornadoes tore through southwestern Ohio accidentally drowned.

Catherine Clayburn's body was found a week after tornadoes struck the area in early June beneath stacked trees in a creek connected to the Stillwater River in Harrison Township.

The Montgomery County Coroner's Office tells the Dayton Daily News a death certificate shows Clayburn drowned in the creek during a storm, though it remains unclear whether the tornadoes played a role in her death.

Clayburn had dementia and had been reported missing hours before the tornadoes hit.

Authorities have said the storm damage made the search for Clayburn difficult. Crews weren't able to find her body until high water in the creek receded.