Remembering the EF5 Tornado.... Or not?

Ed Thomas Coaching

posted on Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Remembering... Or Not?

I have been asked to write a bit on the 2008 tornado. Obviously, 10 years have passed since that fateful day. Due to the fact that May 25th, 2008 became a big part of the Ed Thomas Legacy, I am reluctantly doing so. My reluctance is because my family lost no loved ones or property in the wake of this tragedy that impacted so many families and communities.    

Everyone deals with tragedy in his or her own way. Remembering may help some while causing anxiety for others. Is there true healing, or do the emotional wounds just scab over and then sometimes the scab gets picked? Only the survivors truly know.

After the tornado passed and people could take a breath, survivors began sharing their experiences of survival. All of those stories are amazing and all of the stories are very different. People’s memories of such a powerful event are truly individual and very emotional. Therefore, 10 years down the road, there are probably only a few of those memories that are shared by the group of people who lived through it. The memories are very personal.           

I believe all of us can agree that it’s appropriate to take time to remember the lost loved ones and their families in our thoughts and prayers.

It is also an appropriate time to remember and show appreciation to all those who came to the aid of those who needed help. People from everywhere came to help. Many showed up to physically help without asking for anything in return. Others sent aide and some added thoughts and prayers to help. It allowed us to see true human spirit of the survivors and the compassion and kindness of people from all across this great state and points far beyond. So, a huge THANK YOU to all of those that helped with the tornado recovery effort.

To all of you who were directly impacted and survived the tornado, there are great numbers of us out here who have so much empathy and respect for the way you have responded in rebuilding your lives after so much was lost. The progress, work ethic, and perseverance observed in all the impacted communities has inspired thousands.

"The Lord is a refuge for the oppressed, a refuge in times of distress. Those who know your name will trust you, for you have not forsaken those who seek you, Lord."

Psalm 9: 9-10

Your Challenge

The next time we are complaining or thinking we are having one of those normal “bad days,” remember, there are those who truly have had unexpected and unthinkable bad days. Then, remember how we have seen them respond and persevere in ways that inspire us.

Al Kerns & the Ed Thomas Family Foundation

This post is written by Al Kerns, a long-time friend of Ed Thomas and a team member with the Ed Thomas Family Foundation. Al coached with Ed for 30+ years at Aplington-Parkersburg.