An Easter weekend ice storm en-eased the Midwest in ice yesterday shutting down major highways, stranding motorists and halting air traffic at the world's busiest airport.
At least eight persons have been killed in the latest surge of bitter, wintry weather. Indiana, Oklahoma and Missouri each reported two storm deaths and Illinois and Iowa each reported one.
Freezing rain, snow and high winds crippled Chicago, closing O'Hare International Airport, stopping elevated trains and transforming expressways into ribbons of ice.
A thick glaze of ice covered runways at O'Hare, forcing the huge air terminal to shut down for only the fourth time in its history. A combination of power outages and icy tracks halted or delayed elevated trains across the city.
A curfew was imposed in Decatur, I11., shackled by ice and left without power for four hours. Powed was knocked out to the State Capitol complex in Springfield, III., and some state employes worked by candlelight Friday. Scattered power outages were reported across Indianas, where severe icing along Interstate 65 stranded hundreds of motorists.
Police led a convoy of 65 cars to the First Christian Church in Frankfort, Ind., where some 350 weary motorists took refuge from the storm, sleeping on pews, cots and on the floor. Those stranded ranged from a 3-month-old to a 90-year old woman, as well as numerous pets.