One Year Ago Today

by Elizabeth on April 27, 2012 · 1 comment

in life, tornadoes

One year ago today, my mother’s phone call woke me up at 5 am telling me to get to my safe place – that a tornado was near my neighborhood.

One year ago today, I showered without power and prepared my safe place with all the necessary things.

One year ago today, I left work early in anticipation and fear of the worst tornado outbreak in my generation.

One year ago today, I watched this from the safety of my own living room:

 (Cullman, AL tornado)

And then this:

 (Tuscaloosa, AL tornado. If you don’t want to watch the whole thing, pick it up at about 10:45.)

One year ago today, I realized that I had once lived about 2 blocks from this:

FW: Pictures - Tuscaloosa

One year ago today, multiple tornadoes tore through my state, leaving a trail of destruction in their path.

Tornado Tracks

Pleasant Grove, Alabama

Hackleburg, Alabama

Hackleburg, AL

One year ago today, 252 precious Alabamians left this earth.

252 flags on Alabama’s Capitol Lawn, one for each lost life

One year ago today, citizens of tiny communities and big cities alike stood amid the rubble and vowed to rebuild.

We Are Alabama

For more on the tornado and its aftermath, you can read a portion of the Pulitzer Prize winning stories from The Tuscaloosa News, watch this recap video, read Alabama’s leading meteorologist James Spann’s thoughts one year later, and look through one of the many April 27th Flickr photo sets.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

1 Amy April 27, 2012 at 2:12 pm

I forget how shocking some of the images are. It’s still hard for me to remember that it happened and see how drastically it changed the physical landscape and heart of a place. I went over to a friend’s house that afternoon (she has a nice, safe basement in north Shelby County) with my husband and another friend to ride out the storm. We were taking blankets and flashlights and a radio down there in the event that it all blew our way, and when we walked back upstairs and looked at the television, all we saw was the huge tornado barreling through Tuscaloosa. I will never forget the way my stomach dropped when I saw it. It’s hard to think about even now.


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