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Devastating tornado strikes Joplin, Missouri


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#1191
andyhb

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Also, Extreme Makeover Home Edition (the show) has been canceled. The Joplin episode on January 13th is the last show that will air, it is also the series 200th episode.

Great way to finalize it.

#1192
JoMo

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Better add these before I forget. These are from the KC Star.

Housing troubles mount, especially for Joplin’s poor
http://www.kansascit...especially.html

Dubious deals add to tragedy in Joplin
http://www.kansascit...tragedy-in.html

Life still in limbo for many people in Joplin
http://www.kansascit...or-many-on.html


The last article is over in my area... well Kingsdale/Winfield area. Kingsdale is still pretty bare, but Winfield is rebuilding back nicely, slowly.. but nicely. I've been taking monthly pictures of the area since June or July.



Edit: And yet another one.

Joplin still bears scars of deadly tornado

http://www.kansascit...-of-deadly.html


And another:
http://www.kansascit...the-rubble.html

#1193
JoMo

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Mercy/St. John's Hospital donated 12.5 acres of land to the Joplin School District. The school district plans to do a mine study on the area then build a combined Irving/Emerson elementary school. Irving was destroyed in the tornado and Emerson sustained damage. They also plan to combine nearby Duneweg/Duquense schools into a new school near East Middle School which is also being rebuilt. St. Johns will be demolished starting in February, but due to possible mine shafts they will have to take it down via wrecking ball which will take them until April/May, then construction will begin on the school. JHS/Franklin Tech will also be combined. The school district will have a $21.3 million shortfall due to the construction, which of course will probably be more by the time construction is complete.
http://www.joplinglo...mentary-schools


Cunningham Park gets a lot of news but Parr Hill Park was also destroyed in the tornado. There are some big plans for Parr Hill including skate pods, a small and large dog park, and a splash pad. All were requested by residents before the tornado happened. City of Joplin has entered a Reader's Digest voting contest and say they will use the funds won from this contest to help pay for those improvements at Parr Hill Park.
http://www.joplinglo...es-at-Parr-Hill

You can sign up and vote here:
http://wehearyouamer...t.com/index.jsp


Joplin High School vocal department won $25,000 from a similar voting contest that was put on by 'Glee' the tv show. One of the Grand Prize $50,000 winners was Phil Campbell HS in Alabama, which was destroyed by the Apr 27 outbreak.
http://www.joplinglo...gh-Glee-contest


An Indianapolis, IN endowment group donated $1.5 million to the Joplin Recovery Fund that is earmarked for affordable housing.
http://www.newstalkk...-Grant/11788061


Saw this letter to Santa on Twitter.

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#1194
JoMo

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7 months today, a couple of pic updates from pics I took earlier after the tornado.

This is what this house looked like in July. It says "Do Not touch"
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And someone finally decided to touch it and now it looks like this, complete with garland decoration on the front bush.

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This is what the area looked like after cleanup of the debris and demolition.

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Same side of the street but farther back so I could get some of the other houses taken today.

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Same street but looking up the street... this was a picture taken just last month.

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And a pic taken a month later, today.

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#1195
JoMo

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You know I just remembered tonight that a street in the tornado disaster area always had a luminaria. (candles in bags that were along the street on Christmas Eve)
People would drive down that street with their lights off and the bags were quite a sight to see since nearly everyone participated for a few blocks.

However, people are starting new traditions and the Joplin Globe has a story in the paper on Christmas about new beginnings and traditions.
http://www.joplinglo...or-the-Holidays

The last story caught my eye as it took place just down the road from me.

Below is an excerpt:
Enough of the trees remained that once the debris and foundation had all been cleared, they would provide a backdrop for the one question that would start Levels on her way to a new start, a new life, a new future: “Will you marry me?”

“We got the lot clear, finally, and all that was left were those two trees,” he said.
On Sept. 15, the couple returned to the lot for what they decided probably would be the last time.
It was there — not on bended knee, because it was raining — that he asked her to marry him.

---
​I inadvertently got a picture of those two trees the other day.

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This is what it looked like before:
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---

I know a posted the story of a woman that was trapped under debris in Dillons grocery store, Desiree Rodgers. She was pregnant at the time and they thought she had lost the baby. Well, she had the baby on Friday, Dec 23rd.
http://www.joplinglo...-storm-survivor

Excerpt:
Rodgers was pinned in a squatting position beneath slabs of concrete when the EF-5 tornado that struck Joplin destroyed Dillons. About a half hour into her ordeal, a woman who had been stuck in the debris escaped and flagged down a Carthage fire crew that had arrived to help Joplin rescuers.

Carthage fire Capt. Jason Martin said last summer Rodgers was trapped with over a ton of debris on her back. The debris was so heavy that the jacks the rescuers used to lift it faltered at first but then dug in and gave about two inches of lift, enough for the firemen to slide Rodgers out.


“She wouldn’t have lived much longer,” Martin said. “She couldn’t breathe because of the amount of weight on her.”





Merry Christmas from Joplin!

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#1196
NavarreDon

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Hey JoMo, Just wanted to say Merry Christmas to you & all the people of Joplin. I talked to my Mom last night & she just broke down. She said the will and fortitude of the people is just so overwhelming. Every time she starts to feel sorry for herself she hops in her car and drives around town. She has lived in Joplin for about 2 years now and she says she will never leave because of the people. Bless you all & may this coming year be one of more rebuilding and healing.

#1197
andyhb

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Merry Christmas to all of the folks in Joplin, here's to a continued recovery.

#1198
Pluffmud

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Merry Christmas Joplin! The will and fortitude of all of you is truly amazing. God bless!!

#1199
JoMo

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Thanks for the Christmas wishes. It was a beautiful 55 degrees here today. Might as well be warm if it isn't going to snow.


New York Times:
For Joplin, A Love Letter in Ruins
http://www.nytimes.c...r-in-ruins.html


And stltoday.com both had stories about Joplin today:

How 80,000 volunteers showed Joplin, Mo., that 'the world cared'


http://www.stltoday....444234db5e.html

#1200
jhamps10

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Merry Christmas Jomo and to everyone in Joplin!

reading that letter to Santa, it's hard not to put tears in your eyes seeing it, I hope that the city can plant as many trees as possible to help bring back some shade if nothing else in the summertime!

#1201
Ethel975

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Hoping that everyone had a Merry Christmas and has a safe and happy new year in Joplin! Thank you for keeping us all updated JoMo!

#1202
JoMo

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Thanks. Got a late Christmas Present today....

Received my tornado shelter today. Above ground steel shelter in the garage, exceeds FEMA specifications due to numerous braces. No wifi signal in there but I do get cell signal. Opted to have it painted OSHA blue due to looking at pictures after the tornado and seeing common colors such as whites and browns and silvers but the blue tarps really stood out and were easy to see. The 4 things in the back are vents. The yellow sticker on the door says to insert the safety pin during severe weather, it prevents the door from opening. It's bolted down into the concrete by 5-6" screws that were pretty huge, I think there was around 10 of them and they are sealed with epoxy.

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Academy Sports plans to reopen Jan 27th. Around 30% of businesses taken out by the tornado have got their permits to rebuild so far.
http://www.koamtv.co...open-january-27

Also, as of last Friday, 50% of property owners have received permits to repair or rebuild homes that were damaged or destroyed in the tornado.

#1203
blizzardof09

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god bless all citizens of joplin and other surrounding areas that got hit by this terrible tornado. i hope all had a merry christmas even after this rough year after the tornado and hope that the new year brings even more hope for you guys :)

#1204
irishbri74

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JoMo,

Nice shelter. Quick question though. Is their a secondary exit hatch? I know it's a small vestibule. However, in the event of a tornado knocking it over towards the door, wouldn't want to see anyone not be able to open the door if it was face down. But then again, I guess the bottom is just a 3/4" plywood?

#1205
JoMo

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JoMo,

Nice shelter. Quick question though. Is their a secondary exit hatch? I know it's a small vestibule. However, in the event of a tornado knocking it over towards the door, wouldn't want to see anyone not be able to open the door if it was face down. But then again, I guess the bottom is just a 3/4" plywood?


Very unlikely it will be knocked over. It is 5' x 4' x 6' 4" high.

The bottom is part of the frame as well, there's a couple of frame pieces that go across that bolt down as well, plywood is screwed in on top of that to provide a 'floor' to stand on. There's a way to release the pin locking mechanism for the door in the top inside.

It is possible that debris would pile up in front of the door and make you unable to open the door. That is why it's recommended you have food and water inside but eventually rescuers would reach you.

#1206
B-Rent

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Whew. That makes me feel claustrophobic. If I ever build a house (yeah right) I want a shelter with a pocket door. No getting stuck there.
Looks nice JoMo, and good call on the paint too!

#1207
JoMo

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Whew. That makes me feel claustrophobic. If I ever build a house (yeah right) I want a shelter with a pocket door. No getting stuck there.
Looks nice JoMo, and good call on the paint too!


yeah I hope it's never needed but you can never be too sure. After seeing what was left of the houses after the tornado, being on a slab with open interior rooms wasn't going to cut it. This way there is some protection from projectiles since the outside is made of steel and the cage itself can withstand a cadilac being dropped from 40 feet on top of it. Pretty much every house I've seen that's been going up has had some type of tornado shelter. I've seen a few inground shelters, a lot of concrete shelters poured as part of the foundation near the garages but inside the houses and a couple of concrete interior shelters. If it was a new house that was being built, I'd go with an interior concrete shelter as a closet or something.

#1208
JoMo

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Quite a year this year in the Joplin area. I don't think many people will forget 2011 even though they will probably want to.

In Feb, we had the worst blizzard in 40 years. We don't usually get blizzards around here but I'm not complaining about that though. In May, we had the third worst tornado in US history. After that, we lapsed into a horrible heat wave and drought for a few months, then we ended up with an earthquake across OK that was felt in Joplin.
http://www.joplinglo...le-to-duplicate


The church response was incredible and one of the main reasons Joplin was able to do so well after the tornado. I joke that we have a church on every block here and it may actually be every few blocks but the support and volunteers they were able to provide was nothing short of amazing. Individual donors played a big part as well. If you don't believe in religion, you can't deny that people 'coming together' for a cause does work wonders, and the churches were able to get people together. Over the Summer, I saw many many church organizations that had sent volunteers from far off places. I saw church busses here from PA, NC, CA, IL and other areas I've probably forgotten. There are church groups here that are rebuilding homes for people right now and many that are planning trips back in the Spring and Summer.

http://www.joplinglo...-with-character

#1209
Indystorm

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A blessed New Year to you and all those in Joplin. Glad that the church response went so well. Many religious denominations have well structured and experienced relief organizations. Glad you got your personal tornado shelter that exceeds requirements. Living in the Dunlap area of Elkhart with the 1965 Palm Sunday disaster right here I know many people who were affected as victims or in search and rescue. Thanks for all the updates.

#1210
JoMo

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Thanks Indystorm.

Catching up on some things here.........

*Don't forget the Joplin Episode (and final episode) of Extreme Makeover Home Edition is on Jan 13th!!! The video says the final 2 episodes start Jan 6th, but Jan 6th is Iowa.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KKrYUjO27SA



*St. Johns is going to break ground on the new hospital and start demolition of the old at the end of January. They hope they will have the site cleared of the old hospital by the anniversary of the tornado.

*Both St. Johns and Joplin high School received FEMA money for rebuilding, I don't know if this is the initial payment or what since the high school is eligible for 75% off the new school. But Mercy/St. Johns will get $20 million and Joplin High School will get $2 million
http://www.joplinglo...ornado-recovery

A couple of articles about the recovery and road ahead:

*Joplin recovery still has long road ahead
http://www.tulsaworl...19_ULNSoc939802

*Relying on the kindness of strangers
http://www.nytimes.c...-strangers.html




Edit: Stories from people in a neighborhood SE of me.
http://www.voxmagazi...-starting-over/



And Academy Sports will be back soon:

After the tornado:
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This is what it looks like now:
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#1211
JoMo

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Don't forget to set your DVR or watch Extreme Makeover Home Edition on Fri, Jan 13th!

Home Depot will reopen this Wednesday, they are donating $500,000 to the Joplin Tornado Relief fund as well.
http://www.kspr.com/...0,7449031.story

A story about how a specific contractor from California took homeowners money but didn't fulfill his end of the bargain. It seems there are a lot of these stories around from people I've talked to. Out of state contractors coming in and taking advantage of people.

Always choose a local contractor that has been in business in your area for years, or go with your local Home Builders Association!
http://www.joplinglo...-California-man


And I miss the trees, Joplin is very urban forest with trees that provided a canopy over most areas. The tornado killed 98% of the trees along it's path. The trees that looked like they were going to come out of it and turned green after the tornado pretty much all had to be cut down due to missing bark and other damage that would have eventually killed them. It's really weird being on the edge of the tornado, you can look one way and see trees and houses and everything looks normal, then you look the other way and you see nothing but sky and dirt.

http://www.stltoday....28e94b0c3f.html


Also there has been a small drop at the FEMA housing area.. 586 units were occupied. Now that number has dropped to 523.

More about Home Depot reopening:
http://www.joplinglo...pening-of-store

#1212
BeauDodson

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Thanks for all of the updates from Joplin - just catching up on the thread. Glad the city is recovering - slowly but surely. It will take a long time to get over 2011 - for many parts of the nation.

#1213
JoMo

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Don't forget to watch or set your DVR for Extreme Makeover Home Edition tomorrow (Fri 13th) on ABC!

EMHE article:
http://www.nypost.co...J46Xme10dNqT3MI

Home Depot opened up, well actually they open up at 6 AM today, I believe 7 people lost their lives in Home Depot. There's a plaque that reads " “In remembrance of the lives lost and to a future of rebuilding in their memory.”
http://www.joplinglo...iness-in-Joplin


And a local business decided to get a large storm shelter to protect its employees. The cost was $86,000. Pretty cool article.
http://www.joplinglo...otect-employees

Samaritan's purse is building 20 homes in Joplin. The first is actually pretty close to me.
http://www.newstalkk...s/11969966.php?

#1214
on_wx

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If any Canadians are reading this...CityTV Toronto is airing the EM: Home Edition Joplin two-parter at 7pm and 8pm EST. WKBW Buffalo is airing them at 8pm and 9pm EST. Both tomorrow Jan 13.

Check your local listings

#1215
JoMo

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Thanks, foster

Kobe Bryant, and some of the Chiefs will make guest appearances on EMHE as well.

Ply Gem, a sponsor of the show, has uploaded pics of the destroyed houses of some of the families picked for the show.
http://www.facebook.com/PlyGem
The Howard family house post-tornado:
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The Nevins family house pre-tornado:
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And after the tornado:

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#1216
JoMo

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Joplin Extreme Makeover Home Edition is airing tonight on ABC. 8 Eastern.

One of the families selected was a Vietnam prisoner of war that survived 11 years in a communist prison camp. His house was destroyed in the tornado.
http://www.joplinglo...m-his-life-back

*Brady Connell, one of the two executive producers of the show, said it was the biggest project the show took on during its nine seasons. It involved 21 builders and attracted about 13,000 volunteers from around the world.

“We were just so moved by the volunteers and the spirit in Joplin,” Connell said. “It was truly incredible. It was the best experience in my entire 25 years (in reality television shows).”

Connell said it is hard to see the show’s episodes end.

While it is a television show, “Ultimately what the show is about is stepping up to help a neighbor,” he said. “Everyone knows that’s what America is all about.”



He actually wrote this as well:


For 199 episodes, Ty Pennington and his design team have led a television phenomenon that has helped deserving families in all 50 states. This Friday, January 13, at 8/7c, the 200th episode and series finale of Extreme Makeover: Home Edition airs on ABC. To all who have ever cried or laughed watching an episode of this series over the last 9 years, I hope you will set aside the two hours to watch what I believe is the most impressive feat of non-fiction television in a long while. From my experience, no factual television series has attempted to accomplish so much, by so many, for such a good cause, in one single episode.


The day after a massive F5 tornado hit the heart of Joplin, Missouri on May 22, 2011, George Verschoor and I asked the EM:HE team to commit to helping the people of Joplin however we could, as much as we could, as soon as we could. After all, Extreme Makeover was known for rebuilding lives, and here was a town in the heartland of America that was terrorized by one of the most devastating tornados on record. 8,000 residential dwellings were destroyed leaving 9,200 people to be displaced. 162 lives were lost.


We knew we couldn’t help just one family. So along with Sam Clifton, a builder who had helped us before from Springfield, MO, we challenged ourselves with something we had never done: 7 HOMES FOR 7 FAMILIES IN 7 DAYS. The logistics and casting began immediately. Of the seven families chosen (all of whom lost their homes completely), 2 lost children… literally ripped from the mothers’ arms while they tried to protect their families in their bathtubs. We knew the effort would be an emotional challenge as well as a physical challenge.


During the clean up of Joplin (prior to the build), 90,000+ volunteers came from all over the country to clear 3 million cubic yards of debris, to help families get into temporary housing, and to help over a thousand pets reunite with their original owners or find new homes. We were afraid that the people and businesses of Joplin might not be ready for another massive volunteer effort… would they come out to help seven of their neighbors when so many were still grieving, pulling their lives back together?


During the 7 days in October when we built the new homes, an astonishing 13,000 volunteers arrived to make the impossible happen. It was the greatest volunteer effort I have ever witnessed, and it was not only a testament to the spirit of the people of Joplin and the surrounding towns, it was a reaffirming tribute to the nature of Americans… when we get knocked down, we do what it takes to get up and come back stronger than ever. Neighbors helping neighbors is truly what America is all about, and it was displayed with infinite solidarity and humility that week in Joplin, MO.


The coordination was massive… the skilled workers, the materials, the transportation, the media, the food. Thanks to the generosity of the people of Missouri, to numerous non-profits and church organizations, to our steadfast partners Sears and CVS Pharmacy, and thanks to the stellar builders and volunteers who stepped up in incomprehensible ways, not only was the build successful and on time, but many additional inspiring deeds occurred that week: over 2,000 emergency kits were distributed to Joplin residents; each high school senior residing in the city of Joplin received a $1,000 scholarship to college; a stunning volunteer memorial was created; a new basketball court and play structure were constructed at the city park; a mobile art studio was created to help children deal with the trauma of the tornado through innovate art programs; each of the families was given a dependable storm shelter to provide solace and security; and $1,000,000 -- that’s one million dollars, a cash amount that drives entire seasons of hit shows -- was pledged to help additional Joplin families affected by the storm.


After a terrific trip to Walt Disney World (thank you for 9 faithful years WDW!), the seven families came back to Joplin and stood behind 7 different buses. When the buses moved, not only did the families see seven new, distinctive, affordable homes, they saw a new beautiful neighborhood with pristine sidewalks and aesthetic landscaping. These families, although humble, are pioneers -- all of them desired to return to the center of Joplin to spearhead the rebuilding efforts that still lie ahead. Despite what they have been through, they all look forward to helping others rebuild lives, and helping Joplin restore its glow as one of the great small towns in America.


From ABC, Endemol, Ty and the design team, and the entire 200+ staff and crew of Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, a public THANK YOU to the city and people of Joplin, to the thousands of volunteers who came from as far away as Alaska and Australia, to the local universities and organizations, to the amazing build teams, and most of all to the families who allowed us to tell their stories so that millions will be inspired by their strength, character, and gratitude.


#1217
JoMo

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Extreme Makeover Home Edition was awesome. Looks like a lot of people cried through the entire episode from what I'm seeing on twitter and Facebook.

#1218
Ethel975

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My oldest and I watched it. It was such a wonderfully, touching episode. We cried through a lot of it, but for us it was more because of the women who lost children as we just lost a young one in the family the week before. My prayers are still with everyone in Joplin. I absolutely loved the heart of america display they made for Joplin.

#1219
JoMo

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yeah, it was a sad episode in some ways but happy in others. They had to rush everything in order to fit it into 2 hours. The Howard family (firefighter) didn't want to be on the show and said no thanks several times because they thought it should go to someone that needed it more. Eventually ABC convinced them though.

It's available online if you missed it but want to see it.:

http://abc.go.com/wa...n-family-part-1
http://abc.go.com/wa...n-family-part-2

#1220
on_wx

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Pictures of all the houses
http://portfolio.col...s.com/f50014186

#1221
Huffwx

  • Virginiawx.com

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yeah, it was a sad episode in some ways but happy in others. They had to rush everything in order to fit it into 2 hours. The Howard family (firefighter) didn't want to be on the show and said no thanks several times because they thought it should go to someone that needed it more. Eventually ABC convinced them though.

It's available online if you missed it but want to see it.:

http://abc.go.com/wa...n-family-part-1
http://abc.go.com/wa...n-family-part-2



Thanks for these links-- I'll check them out later. Was playing with the kids last night with the TV off and totally forgot about it until 10:15

#1222
JoMo

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The Joplin Globe has a story about a business rebuilding. I've left out the part about the people they found that didn't make it from the original article, but thought the rest of the story was kind of chilling:
http://www.joplinglo...finding-closure

They drove over debris to get to their store. When they got there, they found blood inside their building and bloody handprints on a bathroom wall, but there was no one there.

The Logsdons were haunted by the memory of the bloodstains in their business. Search dogs found nothing. Whose handprints were they?

About three months after the tornado, Logsdon was tinting the windows of a 1939 Willys coupe. A red convertible pulled up on the lot next to his business and a man got out.
“He was just standing there. This guy didn’t look like a gawker,’’ Logsdon said. “He came over and asked me if I was the owner. I told him I was.
He told me his psychiatrist had told him to come here to get some closure.’’

The young man told Logsdon that he and his girlfriend and her 2-month-old baby were traveling on Main when they realized they were in a tornado. This is something that’s difficult to explain to people. How do you drive into a tornado? Many people did. It must have been so big and so disguised by rain that people did not realize what was happening until it was too late.

When a cement block slammed into their windshield, the man and his girlfriend realized they had to seek shelter. They got out of their vehicle and found their way inside of Logsdon’sbusiness. The blood came from the woman who was hit by debris.

Logsdon had a molded image of the face of Jesus in his business. He had found it a few years ago and decided to hang it on a wall.

Said Logsdon: “When they came inside, they saw Jesus on the floor. The guy told me: ‘I knew I was in the right place when I found Jesus.’’’

All three survived in the bathroom.

“We worried about what had happened for a long time — three months. We’re glad he decided to get some closure. It gave us closure, too,’’ Logsdon said.
-------------------

Teachers, Adminstrators, Parents have been going around the country to find out what they like best when it comes to school design and how to rebuild the schools:
http://www.joplinglo...s-visit-schools


Joplin is being used by college students and professors all over the US to study the effects of PTSD, urban planning, etc..
http://www.joplinglo...effects-of-PTSD

#1223
Huffwx

  • Virginiawx.com

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Just finished those episodes-- well done. That show often makes me tear up when there is loss of a child or something like that, the 2 moms who lost children was just horrible.

#1224
JoMo

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Yeah, EMHE had to cram a lot into 2 hours.

TLC aired a show called "World's Smallest Storm Chaser" tonight about Sam Hall. I believe she's from the UK and she suffers from a skin condition where any small bump will cause her skin to blister. She was on the supercell that would eventually produce the Joplin tornado but they didn't follow it into Missouri. I haven't seen the TLC show but there is a documentary that was aired in the UK called "The Butterfly and the Tornado". The Youtube link below shows her just as she gets into Joplin to check out the damage.

http://youtu.be/cAx4mlYuqc0?t=50m35s



This should be an interesting flashpoint for the City of Joplin over the next week or so.....

Tornado Tourism?
http://www.ky3.com/n...0,6307345.story

Apparently the Joplin Convention and Visitors Bureau has printed up maps that guide sightseers to TV famous locations destroyed in the tornado, they are also working on an app and this Spring they are going to offer guided bus tours.

There's a lot of people that aren't really happy about that from looking at Facebook posts and a group that has sprung up that doesn't want the tornado tours. It seems really tacky and disrespectful to me.

---------

This article states that the City may actually come out $130,000 in the good after the FEMA expenses and the state expenses are paid and insurance is collected on the $24 million dollars damage to the city.
http://www.joplinglo...-tornado-damage

The cost of the Expedited debris removal was $94 million to FEMA.

The city is going to award a contract for the Demolition of 118 properties that were abandoned by their owners.

#1225
B-Rent

  • 1,299 posts
  • Joined November 23, 2010

I just came here to ask about that map JoMo. Just read about it on KY3.
How are the tourists being treated when they come through town? If I dropped in on Joplin next time I'm in the Ozarks would I get the cold shoulder from people?
I do see how it is tacky, but like they said, its hard to be avoided. Might as well help the community out somehow. Have any areas of town become more "solem" than others?



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