Monday, February 28, 2011


SO...we received a phone call at 5 a.m. with "emergency" lighting up in the caller id.  Jesse stumbled to grab the phone and when he picked it up he was greeted with a message from the weather center announcing that we were under a tornado warning and need to seek shelter asap!
I sat up and turned on the the TV to see what was happening and saw that indeed there were multiple sighting of tornado's all around us *YIKES*!
So we got up, grabbed a flash light, cell phones and the kids (okay, I grabbed diapers and wipes a sippy & blanket), and we headed to the basement.
The kids were so groggy that they didn't know what was happening until they saw the lightening and heard the thunder.  We turned on the television downstairs to see the weather and when they said "tornado" the Red's start freaking out!  I mean, question after question after question!  "Is the tornado going to get us?", "Is the thunder the tornado?", "Is the tornado going to take our roof off?", "what is a tornado?". 
Then the weather man reported that there had been a tornado in the town right next to ours that is literally 2 miles from our house...freaky, freaky.  In the next county over, which is about 10 miles down the road, there was a house that was flattened by an F3! 
Finally the storm passed and we were able to return to our bed (plus a few kids), but I couldn't sleep.  My mind was racing, thinking back to the last time I had to "take cover".  You see I am no stranger to tornado's.  I grew up in Alabama where it's ranked to be the state with "highest percentage of tornadoes rated as of significant intensity" ( 
And on April 8, 1998 that percentage turned out to be true as an F5 tornado ripped through the middle of the state.  The towns in it's path were Oak Grove, Sylvan Springs (where I lived), and Edge water  leaving a path of destruction 19 to 20 miles long in it's wake.  It looked like a bomb were completely demolished, people I knew lost everything.  I had a friend that lived just down the street that I grew up with and their house was completely wiped out.  They only survived because they went into the crawl space under the house.  We were about 10 houses down from where this tornado ripped through and were thankfully left untouched. 
I happened to be at a friends house that night and was right in the path of this devastating storm.  Luckily they had a storm shelter that we took refuge in and all I can remember is complete silence followed by the loudest roaring sound I've ever heard.  Then the shelter's door began to shake and we all coward low.  After what seemed to be an eternity the winds finally calmed and we climbed out.  My dad was so worried about me that he drove through all the destruction to get me.  On the way home I got a first hand glimpse of the "aftermath" of this F5.  There were people wandering the street in utter shock, debris was everywhere and the town I grew up in was unrecognizable.
The military was brought in and I had to show my license everyday just to get home!

It is unreal the damage these storms can do!  So please make sure you have your "safe place" and be prepared and BE SAFE!!!  This is an event that I would never like to experience again!

I didn't think the weather could be so bad here in Louisville, but in the 5 years we've lived here we've experience a hurricane (weird I know), a devastating ice storm, an earthquake (again, weird)....and now a tornado....and let's not  talk about the allergies they are a catastrophe on their own!
I would like to know if there is a state I could move too where I could avoid any natural catastrophe?


  1. Joy - thanks for sharing such a tragic and frightening time from your past. In Louisville, we had a devastating tornado on April 3, 1974. I was in Bowling Green at school, but managed to get through on the phone to my family who were still huddled downstairs waiting for the all clear. In the nearby neighborhoods, I walked through debris from friends homes and saw first-hand the destruction and fury that can occur. I, too, had to show my license to the national guard to get home. I hear people scoff at warnings and flippantly say they just roll over in bed. I pray they're never caught by a sudden and deadly storm. I'd rather spend a groggy day thankful.

  2. The state of Heaven. Glad you guys are okay!


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