We were driving west on I80 last Sunday when the news of the deadly tornado in Parkersburg first hit the air waves. Growing up just a few miles from there, I was shocked by the pictures that were shown. I know the area well, but could find no landmarks in the massive destruction.
We have since learned that it was a very rare EF5 storm, the strongest one to hit Iowa in 30 years. We’ve also learned that there are very few safe places to go in a storm with winds this strong.
It has been amazing to hear the stories of survival; the mom who held on to her children as the wind tried to suck them up; the man who was fishing and returned home to devastation, the elderly women who was dug out from under the rubble.
The other amazing thing I’m hearing and seeing is the quiet determination to get to work, salvage what we can and move forward.
If you would like to see some home video of the storm and pictures of its aftermath check out: http://www.kcci.com
Our thoughts and prayers are with the families who have lost so much in Parkersburg.