This morning, thought there’s much to do in the shop and so much to think about with preparations for upcoming events, I’m remembering April 27th, 201, exactly six months ago today when a mile-wide tornado blew through my hometown of Pleasant Grove, Alabama, wrecking the landscape, homes and the lives of my neighbors. It was the first time I’d ever witnessed a family find out that their mother was dead, the first time I’d seen entire homes and all they contained in giant piles on their lots, the first time I’d ever seen that many people walking the streets, having no idea what to do next and no way to wrap their heads around what had just happened. It was like a horror movie.
I’ll never forget it. Weeks (on into months) were spent on relief efforts at my home church where I spent as much time as possible when I didn’t have massive orders that still needed filling (hey…life goes on, huh?). I was working out of hotels, empty library cubicles and eventually, back in my parents’ basement (our house was, thankfully, alright and undamaged from the storm). It was a mess-of-a-time, but I was so, so grateful that I could be there to help. Having JUST moved back from Connecticut (literally, just 2 weeks before this), people joked that I brought the storm with me 😉 I’m glad that’s not the case and certainly feel blessed to have been able to help out where I could. All of this brought our community together in a way I’ve never seen. Strangers giving rides, delivering food and water, cutting down trees and limbs…beauty in the midst of a disaster.
Never forget. 4.27.2011.