Seriously, what is happening to our weather? This is the first of March and much of the country has suffered some of the most devastating storms and tornadoes we have ever seen!
On Friday March 2 we were told that a storm was coming that could possibly be the worst yet! I'm not sure if it's true in all areas of the country but in my area the weather forecasters can over exaggerate conditions to the point where you prepare and nothing happens.....it can really be frustrating. But worse it can cause people to become rather laid back about preparing for bad weather.
But when we heard that Jim Cantore from the Weather Channel was in town and was broadcasting live from the Ohio river we all gasped! Noooo, this kind of changes things...... this could be serious!! Not only was Jim in town but dozens of storm chasers began to arrive. So we all knew at that point that it must be a very serious condition brewing out there.
Here is a clip from this mornings ABC News Good Morning America on the devastation.
Our cell phones began ring continually from family members checking on us and asking us to come home. We didn't know whether to stay or go. Businesses were closing,schools were dismissing immediately. And we knew we only had a tiny window of time to decide. We also knew we took a huge risk whatever we decided. Driving home in the direction of these storms could mean that we could get caught in something on the highway.Or we could stay and find out if these huge buildings would hold up better than they did in 1974. Back then this area was destroyed by a tornado and believe me it was all we could think about!
A small town about 25 miles from where we all live and work called Henryville was in the direct line of these enormous tornadoes. In just moments after the announcement of the tornado warning we heard the TV announcer say Henryville had been flattened........flattened! I just stared at the TV in disbelief. We know people who live there it can't be flattened. But it was true. In addition to Henryville another small rural town was badly destroyed as well called Marysville.
So many tragic stories have started to emerge. The news that a toddler had been found in a field alone but alive sent cold chills through all of us. Where was her family. Who was her family. Then we heard the news that her Mother,Father and two siblings all had perished in the storm. Yesterday we learned that little Angel Babcock had died. Her grandmother told a local station that just before she passed away she reached out her tiny arms as if someone was picking her up. I think her parents were there with her, and did just that!
Another story that will stay with me forever is about a young mother who went to pick up her children from school and ran immediately to the basement with them assuming it was the safest place. Her house was hit by what could be the same tornado that destroyed Henryville. She was found alive shielding her children but tragically the rafters from the house severely damaged her legs, the last I heard she lost both of her legs. Please read her story here as it appeared in The Courier Journal one of our local newspapers.
Her name was Angel! The child that died and the school bus driver who is being hailed as a hero are both named Angel......that gave me cold chills!!
One of our employees told us that while they were tarping up roofs they noticed huge holes everywhere in the ground. It was from the unbelievable hail that this evil storm produced..... the size of soft balls.
And as if all of this wasn't enough to deal with, this morning we woke up to 2 to 4" of snow!!SNOW! Jim Cantore said never has it ever been recorded that snow has ever followed a tornado out break!
So we have gone from tornadoes and severe storms on Friday with 70 degrees in March to snow this morning with morning temperatures of 33-34 degrees!
I'm certainly no doomsday person, but this sort of insanity really stops me in my tracks. It confirms what I already knew, that we are not in charge. At any given moment with absolutely no notice anyone of us could be gone!! As a women at the fairgrounds said to everyone standing in disbelief of the news," get yourself right people, get yourself right with the Lord, he's coming"