Sunday, April 25, 2010

The Storm

A tornado almost a mile wide tore through Mississippi on Saturday, killing at least 10 people and causing significant injuries and damage. Fortunately, Vicksburg was out of harm's way as the storm moved northward.

Yazoo City, Mississippi, was hardest hit, and Mississippi Governor Haley Barbour, who was in Yazoo City where his home is located, called the twister "gigantic" and said that "in places [it] seemed to be several miles wide."

Preliminary reports indicate that at least 100 houses were destroyed in Yazoo County, and the death toll is expected to rise as rescue crews reach hard-hit areas where some residents may be trapped in badly damaged homes.

Governor Barbour stated, "By God's grace [the tornado] did not go into the most central part of the city, the most populous. However, it went through the southern edge and eastern edge of town in a number of large neighborhoods," he said. "A number of businesses have been destroyed and others severely damaged -- there are churches that have been obliterated."

Mississippi residents reported that the path of the twister was a half-mile to a mile wide, and news reports stated that the tornado had traveled 150 miles across Mississippi, starting in the western part of the state and moving northeast before weakening as it moved into Alabama.

In Eagle Lake, near the Louisiana border, 47 houses received damage and 10 houses were destroyed, and in Holmes County, approximately 50 homes sustained structural damage.

In July of 2008, I visited Yazoo City and wrote a two-part post about my visit. If you would like to read those posts and see Yazoo City as it was then, you can click here and here.

It's going to take a long time, a lot of money, and a lot of hard and heartrending work to restore the picturesque little town on the edge of the Mississippi Delta, but I have faith in the unconquerable spirit of Mississippians that has allowed us to recover from some of the most devastating storms in the history of our nation ... Hurricane Camille and Hurricane Katrina come to mind ... and I know the people of Yazoo City, as well as others from all over Mississippi, will come together as one to do what has to be done to rebuild their town and to help those families who not only lost their homes, but lost loved ones, too.

My heart and prayers go out to them, and I'm going to try to contact the shelters to see how we can help.

I'd like to thank those of you who wrote expressing concern for our safety here in Vicksburg. We were very, very fortunate to be out of harm's way.


Dot Moore said...

So glad you are safe.

Deb said...

it is so thoughts and prayers are with glad you were safe...

RachelD said...

Thank you, Janie, for letting us know you're OK, and for such eloquent words about our state. The indomitable, unconquerable spirit and determination of our folks in the face of great obstacles and tragedies are wonderful to behold, and I'm so proud to be FROM there, and OF there.

My prayers and thoughts to you all, in this stunned time, and in yet another of rebuilding and recovery.

Loui♥ said...

prayers from Denver to you and yours and all affected by these terrible storms..
May the losses be fewer than anticipated, and the rebuilding speedier..
warmest hugs..

Marjorie (Molly) Smith said...

I am so glad you'll were spared as was my area, we did receive sever weather and lost power for awhile, but other than that we were totally Blessed.
I have dear friends that live close to the TN border and they suffered sever weather but nothing like Yazoo. My prayers and thought are with the dear folks of MS and other States that were effected by this system.
I am so glad you were ok.

Blondie's Journal said...

We read about the tornado's in the news. My heart goes out to all of those affected by it. How sad there were so many casualties. I am sending my prayers.


Judy said...

I had no idea of the damage until I saw it on the news last night. Thank goodness ya'll are safe! Keep us posted on what can be done to help this area rebuild.


Lisa said...

My daughter is home this weekend from NOLA and I haven't seen the news! I'm so sorry to hear about this. My heart and prayers go out to Yazoo City.

Kathy :) said...

I am so glad to hear you are safe and sound...thought of you when I saw that terrible storm on the news and thought I'd check in...I heard your Gov say it was a monster of a storm....

God Bless,
Kathy :)

Barbara said...

Janie, I am postin here as well as today's post. The news said southeast part of Ms. My daughter lives in Summit and I worry about them all the time. I ask for prayers for these people.

Glad your safe.