Monday, June 6, 2011

It's a twista, it's a twista!

For some people, tornadoes conjure up fun memories of watching The Wizard of Oz, all cozy in their houses eating popcorn and huddled under their snuggies.  Dorothy's house gets swept up in a twister and brought all the way to the land of Oz, where fun and magical things happen like dancing scarecrows and her hair magically changing length a million times.

Photo Credit

But for most of us, tornadoes mean death and destruction, plowing their way through towns with no mercy whatsoever.  As much as I love weather, (my first semester of college I majored in broadcast journalism and wanted to eventually be a meteorologist) I know we have no control over it, and know that the damage it can cause can be devastating.

A couple weeks ago a town very close to mine was destroyed by an Ef-5 tornado.  The highest rating a tornado can get.  It was 3/4 mile wide, and traveled 6 miles straight through the center of town, destroying huge businesses and homes alike.  The death toll is still rising and is somewhere in the 140-range. Right around that same week, tornadoes also destroyed cities in Arkansas, Oklahoma and Alabama before that.  There were many more in other states as well.  This has been the deadliest year for tornadoes since they started recording them sometime in the 1950's.

Joplin Tornado: photo credit
Joplin Tornado: photo credit

I'm listing some links if you'd like to try to help in any way.  I know many towns are hosting areas to drop off donations, and of course the red cross could always use blood.  You can give a monetary donation (which is what they prefer, so they can quickly cater to the victim's needs.)  It doesn't have to be much- every little bit helps.

A friend is holding an auction for her photography that she will give 100% to the Joplin tornado victims (the picture is beautiful!):

Latest news on the Joplin tornado, and ways to donate sponsored by the United Way (also if you live close, you can sign up to help with cleanup):
Rebuild Joplin

For the Joplin, Missouri tornado victims:
An article with lists of ways to donate:

For the Tuscaloosa, Alabama tornado victims:

For a general disaster relief donation to the Red Cross:

I know author Maureen Johnson had an auction up last week to help raise money for tornado victims, the Chiefs donated $35,000 to the Joplin victims, and Home Depot donated $1 Million to direct relief to the Joplin victims (the Home Depot in Joplin was completely leveled, killing numerous people).

The response to all the devastation our country has experienced in the past months has been overwhelming!  It's nice to know that even a country that is so divided in many ways, can come together for a cause like this.  It gives me a shred of hope that maybe someday we can come together in other ways to make our country stronger.

This article made me smile: Paying it Forward

Thanks for all the prayers and help- those communities will survive because of you.



Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

We've given to the Red Cross twice now this year. Tornadoes hit our state in April in the single largest outbreak ever in the Carolinas.

Colene Murphy said...

Very awesome of you to post all this helpful stuff for them!

Donea Lee said...

I'm so glad you weren't hit. I can only imagine. The devastation weather can create...

I had a winning bid on an auction site when the Alabama twister hit. I need to check some more out. Thanks for all the info and links!!

Anne N Kenny said...

The pictures are truly haunting. I'm glad you stayed safe during all of the chaos.

I'll be checking out all of these links!

Michael Di Gesu said...

I am so glad you and your family are safe Abby.

I am so sorry for those people and their community. Thanks for spreading the word and for the links.

Jennie Bailey said...

I'm so glad that you are okay! And I could totally picture you as a weather girl. This is really sweet of you to post all these links. We donated to the Red Cross. I never feel like donating is enough but that's all we can think of to do!

erica and christy said...

Such horrible devestation is hard to even comprehend. Wisconsin gets its share of tornadoes and we've had some around us this year, but nothing like these (thank goodness). Thanks for the links.

Rachel Morgan said...

Hey, you changed your blog's clothes! We're not twins anymore :( But it looks great, I like it :-)

Wow, those pictures look hectic... I'm lucky enough to live in a part of the world where major natural disasters are pretty much non-existent, so I can't even imagine what it must be like to go through something like that. It's great of you to post all the links.

alexia said...

My heart goes out to all of the people effected by this... thanks for all the links!

Talli Roland said...

Wow. Thinking of everyone who has been affected and wishing them well.