Twenty-five years ago Sunday, Horry County was pummeled by the most destructive hurricane ever to strike South Carolina's coast.

Hurricane Hugo formed off the coast of Africa on Sept. 9, 1989, and began tracking west. By mid-September, it was battering Caribbean islands as a Category 4 hurricane.

After weakening while passing over Puerto Rico, Hugo emerged into the Atlantic as a weakened Category 2 storm. It regained strength, however, and when it made landfall just north of Charleston in the rural community of McClellanville on Sept. 21, it was again a Category 4 storm with winds more than 130 mph.

Hugo left behind a path of destruction that can only be described as terrifying by those who experienced it.

In remembering Hugo, U.S. Sen. Tim Scott, R-S.C., said South Carolinians pulled together to rebuild following the monster storm.

"My overwhelming memory of Hugo and the days after, however, is not of tragedy but of kindness," Scott said in prepared comments.

"Not of terror but of friendship. Not of homes being ripped apart, but of communities coming together," Scott said. "Our state may have gotten knocked down, but we stood back up, dusted ourselves off, and worked together to rebuild."

Read more about these stories in the Myrtle Beach Herald and Horry Independent.

Carolina Forest Chronicle editor Michael Smith contributed to this report.

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