That about sums up a good part of the day in my neck of the woods. I live in a suburb west of Fort Worth and man did Mother Nature have quite a time with us today. Fortunately for me, though sadly not for others, most of the really terrible storms went past my general area with the exception of some massive rain, thunder, lightening and hail!
I love the beauty of Spring. Flowers and trees blooming, grass becoming green and the smell of rain in the air but I also dread it a bit as well. Today is 100% of the reason why. I know some people actually get a little excited about Spring time weather but it has the complete opposite effect on me. I loathe tornadoes and any weather that is remotely related to them. And trust me, I have good reason.
April 10, 1979, Wichita Falls, Texas: In history it is referred to as “Terrible Tuesday” by many. This is the date that a massive F4 tornado tore through the town killing 42 people and leaving thousands homeless, including my family.
I was only 18 months old at the time so I do not remember a moment of it. I do however, have the stories and pictures handed down from my family that will forever be ingrained in my mind. I was also able to see the physical scars left behind on my mother and brother as reminders of what a truly terrible day it was.
My mom was at home with my brother and I that day as well as babysitting two other little girls. My dad was out with a friend when he called her and told her that she needed to take immediate cover. Being that we lived in a tiny house, our options for shelter weren’t much. She took all four kids and put us in a bedroom closet and lay on top of us the best she could to protect us. I always remember her saying how immediately before the tornado hit, it became so still you could hear a pin drop……..just before the sound of a train would come roaring. The tornado devastated our home, knocking it down completely. The only walls left standing were the ones to the closet in which we had laid. My brother had been blown to the front yard and our bodies were scattered a bit but everyone made it through alive. My mom and brother had some serious injuries but none that were life threatening. Thanks to Jesus!!
I like to think that being through such a horrific natural disaster once in my lifetime, my odds for another are lessened but I am pretty sure it doesn’t really works that way, especially living in tornado alley. I cross my fingers and say my prayers every Spring that we will make it through another season without having to live through a tornado. Today, I can say that luck is still on my side. Tomorrow may bring another story, just as it did for many in the Dallas/Fort Worth area today.
Remember, tornado warnings should be taken seriously! Some quick safety tips:
- Seek shelter in a storm cellar, safe room or basement if possible. If you lack access to underground shelter, an interior room such as a closet or bathroom is a good option.
- If you live in a mobile home, your odds are better in a low lying area OUT of your mobile home.
- If you are in a vehicle, DO NOT try to outrun a tornado.
We as people have zero control over the natural disasters but one thing we can do is PREPARE. For more tips on tornado preparedness and a detailed guide on prepping a disaster kit Click here.
Enjoy the beautiful Spring days ahead of us friends but also BE PREPARED!!!!
Have you ever been in a tornado or other natural disaster? What did you do to prepare?