I was reading the about me section of John (Tommie) Thomas LeFors’ profile one day. This is what part of it said:
“On March 18, 1937, Lula Mae and Patsy went to the school gymnasium to see Grace and Helen in a PTA program. That was the day of the biggest school tragedy in the United States. The school district was using natural gas to heat the school. Because of a gas leak, there was a build up of gas in the basement of the building. When a switch was turned off in the shop the gas was ignited and caused the main building to explode. There were approximately 300 children killed that day at the London School. The Lefors family was blessed that no one in the family was killed. Grace had both of her pelvic bones fractured. Lula Mae’s brother was there very soon to help Grace while Lula Mae searched for Helen. Helen and some other children were so frightened they ran from the explosion and into some woods. The children eventually returned to the site of the explosion. Lula Mae always said it was two hours before she found her. Shortly after that explosion and because of it, a law was made requiring an odor be put into gas so that leaks could be detected.”
You can read more about this tragedy here: New London School Explosion.