Monday, April 27, 2015

It was a day that changed lives forever.

Four years ago today, Alabama like much of the southeastern states was hit by a terrible tornado outbreak. It was a day that changed lives forever. This outbreak gave people that usually were not too bothered by storms a whole new respect for Mother Nature. These storms which were extremely powerful happen during the daylight hours giving many a first time, first hand, look at what tornadoes can do. The generation before us could tell you exactly where they were when President Kennedy was shot. Unfortunately for many, the storms of 2011 carried the same kind of significance.

People are more weather alert now that at any other time in history. Thanks to the internet we have access to radar on our phones at any time, day or night, and most people know how to read them. Had the same storm system passed through this area 20 years ago the death toll I’m afraid would have been much higher. Technology is definitely saving lives.

Using Cullman Alabama as an example, it will simply never look or feel the same again. Each time I ride out 278 east, I get a sick feeling in my stomach as I look at the landscape that was once so beautiful and now looks so barren. Landmarks that defined our town were destroyed and are forever gone. But, with every tragedy that occurs there is always a bright side if you look hard enough for it. The people of Cullman County, Alabama and the rest of the southeast pulled together that day. There was no prejudice, no black or white, and no rich or poor, only people helping people. That day, April 27, 2011, we were all reminded how precious life really is and how fast it can be taken from us. It would do us all good to remember and reflect on that day often and keep that same spirit in our hearts.

                                                                                  Lowell Henderson


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