I was born and raised in Tornado Alley. A small town called Emporia, Kansas. I saw my first tornado when I was five years old. The tornado I remember the most happened in June of 1990. My mom, sister, little brother and I lived in a small two bedroom apartment on the third floor of a pretty crappy apartment building.
My brother and I would run around on that carport. I'm sure the neighbors loved us.
The sirens sounded, and my mom made us go down to the first floor and get under the stairs in the hallway. We were the only people in the building taking shelter. The kids, not mom. She stayed upstairs and was watching t.v. and talking on the phone.
After about 20 minutes my little brother and I got bored so we went back upstairs. We watched as a dark mass moved across the west side of town. It destroyed a lot of homes. I remember hearing about a dad who drove him and his infant child to a house with a basement, and as he was running into the house with his child in a car seat, he was thrown up against a wall. The car seat was found in a nearby field with a safe baby inside. A story about how a whole house was leveled, and yet, a table with a rose in a vase on it in the basement was left undisturbed in the same house, now with a lot less house.
A story about a dog left outside while the family took shelter. When the family came upstairs they found their dog, house included sitting in their living room. Word has it the dog didn’t move for 3 days.
Those are the happy stories.
There are a lot less of those. There are even less of those going on right now in Moore, OK. I’m heading up to Moore with Dan Patterson Friday night with truckloads of donations. We are taking them to a local church who is ready to help. The Red Cross is busy with relief efforts and FEMA is still helping go through all the damage. It will be ten years before everything is back to normal with everything. But you can’t get back to normal after losing so many loved ones. Kids have died. Brothers have died. Sisters, parents, aunts, uncles, and beloved pets.
The church we are going to is expecting us. They gave us a list of what they needed. This isn’t something that is going to interrupt Red Cross or FEMA efforts. Your donations to the Red Cross are needed as well as your donations to the Salvation Army. Pick an organization you’ve heard of and if you can help, please help. If you would like to help with physical donations, fantastic. We will take whatever you can donate. These are the items they are in need of most.
Other items needed will be sunscreen, pop up tents or tarps, as they don’t have roofs in a lot of these situations.
These are our neighbors. I HAVE to help. I hope you’ll donate what you can and make a difference. The drop off is at the Office Grill and Sports Bar at 50th
and Frankford until Friday afternoon.