Friday, April 27, 2012

I'll Never Forget

April 27th will never be "just another day" in the minds of Alabamians. It will forever be a feeling in the pit of our stomachs that emerges at the faintest threat of another tornado.
 -Kathleen Davis,

I'll never forget that Wednesday afternoon
Sitting around on my lunch break, checking twitter updates on my phone. 

I'll never forget seeing the tweet about a tornado heading for Cullman.

 I'll never forget being in my office, freaking out, watching James Spann's live report of the tornado ripping through the city.

I'll never forget the pit in my stomach that wouldn't go away. That feeling of hopelessness, sadness, and fear for my loved ones and friends.

I'll never forget calling  my best friend Jackie from Cullman to make sure her family was OK, even though she now lived in Tuscaloosa and was "safe".
I'll never forget  later that afternoon sending Jackie weather updates via text as she sat in a basement in Tuscaloosa, living out the nightmare-ish day first hand.

I'll never forget Prateek and I packing up his truck to take supplies to my ravaged hometown and driving the 11 hours overnight, pulling into Cullman at 6AM. 

I'll never forget seeing Jackie's house for the first time-- half blown down, but her and her family all standing there alive and well, picking up the pieces.

I'll never forget staring at the remnants of my church's Sanctuary. Or trying to remember what once stood on those empty city blocks.

You don't really understand how devastating it is until you're standing in the middle of the rubble.  And you don't really understand the sense of a community pulling together for a common good, until even after going through such tragedy, you can still feel the warmth of a neighbor's good heart.

May this day never be forgotten by our community, and may it always remind us how strong of a state we live in.

God Bless Alabama, my Heart of Dixie! 


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