Joplin tornado devastation “chilling”

Sun fades over destruction in Joplin, Missouri.

JOPLIN, Mo.—I made it to Joplin around 7:30 p.m. Our disaster relief team was still in meetings, so I asked for directions to the area that had received a lot of damage. The sun was fading, curfew was about to start, but I wanted to see firsthand and feel the impact of what had happened.

It is unreal. After the initial storms in Virginia and then the tornado in Alabama, I’ve personally thought about action steps to keep my family safe in the event of a storm. Yet even the best laid plans would not have helped some of these residents. From houses being completely obliterated, to houses full of debris from other homes—this isn’t something your mind can envision until you see it in person.

Destroyed house in Joplin, Missouri.

The shot that chills me is where there is a realty sign that says, “FOR SALE WITH OWNER.” In the context of the condition of the home, the meaning completely changes from its original intent.

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For sale with owner

tornado devastation in Missouri.

Devastation in Joplin.

Joplin, Missouri.

A house destroyed by Joplin tornado.

A mangled car from the Joplin tornado.

Residents sift through the remains of their homes.

Widespread destruction in Joplin, Missouri.

Dusk settles over a devastated neighborhood in Joplin.

Devastation left behind by the Joplin tornado.

Operation Blessing convoy of relief arrives to Joplin, Missouri.

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2 Responses

  1. Christina Repka

    I traveled down to Joplin from a southwest suburb of Chicago, IL with my 2 teenage boys and their friends. We feel so blessed to have been able to join up with Operation Blessing!!! Our leader, Nick, was incredible. The discussions he shared with us of his experiences with OB has led me and my boys to want to join you and volunteer more of our time not just in Joplin but to those around the US who are suffering these kinds of devastating losses. The stories and emotions I am walking away with cannot be topped by any vacation we ever took!! A woman who we helped said this to me and it will stick forever… “I worked my whole life to have beautiful things that would bring me happiness, but in a few moments those things were gone. And now here you are and in a few moments, you brought me more deep-seated happiness then any of those things I bought.” I gave her a hug as she cried. THANK YOU for what you do. We look forward to joining Operation Blessings !!!

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