Joplin Update & Photos


Yesterday, I took off from my morning job and the wife, younger daughter, her friend and I all went to Joplin and evacuated my two grandkids. Taking two vehicles, we picked up the kid’s clothes and other small personal items. Hopefully this will free up my older daughter and her husband to take care of things without worry.

After reaching Joplin, it took another hour and a half to get to her house. Most roads in were blocked, and the officers there were all from out town, so they could not tell us how or where to get in at. I only saw one person get let through, and that was because she was there to identify her son’s body. She said this so matter-of-fact like that it was shocking.

When we got there, Jim Forbes, St. Louis Post photographer was already at the house, as my daughter is also his niece. He took the first five photos below, for more from Forbes, scroll down.

St. John's Hospital, Joplin Missouri

 Destruction beyond belief. Heartaches by the thousands. My grandson (7 years old in a couple of weeks) lost a 5 year old friend and the friend’s sister. My daughter and family lost their house and vehicles, but are not complaining….just thankful! See photos of their house below.

West / back side of house.

South side of house

One block from the house above.

Two blocks north of house.

The traffic near the damage was crazy….bumper to bumper. There were also many, many volunteers as well as police and emergency professionals from states all around. We saw ambulances still leaving town, and at the same time there were semi-trailer loads of plywood and relief supplies coming in. An amazing, frightening, saddening and a generally emotional time for us all.

“One of the most shocking scenes I witnessed yesterday happened while I was going house-to-house with firefighters. A woman walked up and pointed to a blanket less than 10 feet away and calmly said her mother’s body was under it.”  – James Forbes  ~ 

For professional pics: PHOTOS BY JAMES FORBES

Other pictures from a Joplin resident – See over 2,500 photos of the damage here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/clovenlife

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17 Comments

Filed under Missouri, NEWS, The Four States

17 responses to “Joplin Update & Photos

  1. The more I see, the more stunned I become. Selfishly, glad to hear that your family is fine. Best of luck & thanks for your time.

  2. darlene

    am left speechless…totally appreciative that Marvin is well and ok!

  3. Sherrill Stone

    Glad your family is okay!

  4. Well done Sekan for taking your grandkids out of that. How traumatic for everyone involved. I hope the community bands together and builds a bigger brighter future.

  5. Tracy, my heart just sinks with such sorrow at every picture I see from Joplin,. MO. Looks like help arrived quickly. Glad you and your family are ok.
    Weather and its elements are getting stronger and more frequent. This I don’t like and I hope we can turn things around soon enough globally to ensure this doesn’t keep getting worse. Stay Well Tracy.

  6. Moe

    Our friend Duane at Erstwhile Conservative lives in Joplin. He has some photos and observances as well . . .

    http://duanegraham.wordpress.com/2011/05/23/sunday-evening/#comments

  7. bobbi wells

    Tracy,
    I had no idea that Shawn and her family were in the tornado! I’m so happy to hear they are all fine. My prayers have been with the people of Joplin since I first heard.
    The scenes depicted in the pictures are unreal and I can hardly believe that is Joplin I am looking at. So glad the kids have a safe place with you and Marie.
    GIve Shawn my love and tell her she is very much in my prayers right now.
    Bobbi

  8. Thanks to all for your comments and kind words.
    I heard this morning that 1,400 to 1,500 people are still unaccounted for.

  9. Oh my God! I’m simply speechless.. this is horrible. I got to call home. Did it hit Alabama or Georgia too?

    • Hi Lynn. I Don’t think the south got hit like this, at least this time. I’ve been working 2 jobs, so I don’t get too much news time though. Nice to hear from you, Tracy

  10. Tragic. Looking at these photos, I sit stunned by the devastation. My prayers to your family for a swift renewal and reconstruction.

  11. I’ve been in contact with a couple of friends there. One couple we know lost their house, but no lives lost of friends so far. Praying that stays that way. Of little importance in the scheme of things: I hear Fred’s red and chili is gone. One of my favorites and a meeting place for a bunch of Joplinites.

  12. Sekanblogger,
    I’m glad that you and your family are okay. These pictures tell a story that numbers can’t. It’s hard to comprehend, and frightening how fast people’s lives can change.
    I wish you and your family and friends safety and a quick recovery, and the same to all the good people of Joplin.

  13. Pingback: Storm Damage | Kmareka.com

  14. Shawn

    Thank you everyone for the kind words! Joplin will come back from this. Our biggest fear for right now is the Westboro baptist “church” I wouldn’t call them much of a “church” They are coming to protest that we got what we deserve because God hates us! And that they do not want us to rebuild!!! They need prayers for them!!!! Saying Obama and Nixon are the anti-christ!!! What is wrong with some people. Dad I think they need to be at the State Mental hospital where you work..in a room..locked up! They are for sure.mentally insane..if they think God did this to us! NO God saved 1,000’s of people. We are more than lucky that the death toll is only in the hundreds…When more than 10,000 houses were destroyed plus numerous businesses!!! It spread from 15th street to 28th street from one end of town all the way to the other! It was crazy!!! You can never imagine what it is like to be “INSIDE” of the tornado as it rips through your house! Or to see your friend in a hospital bed with a collapsed lung..cut and bruised from head to toe..because the tornado thru her threw her house and landed her in the backyard. Or the.. pain she feels to have to Cremate 2 of her 3 children because she could only grab one when the twister hit her!!! Or for what her ex-husband went through when he went to the rubble that was once her home, to find his 10 yr old in the front street..dead..eyes wide opened. Then to find out his son “age 6″ was life flighted to another town. Then to go there and watch him die and be pulled off of life support. Then not know where his 5 yr old daughter is..to find out two days later she is on life support in Sprinfield, MO. She thankfully is now breathing on her own and eating solid foods. Where does a family even begin to start again after that? NO home…NO belongings…and now only 1 of 3 kids alive! Sorry had to vent! The things I have seen…and heard..are worse than your scariest movie!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    • I feel for your friend and her family. I can’t imagine the pain. And you are right, God IS the people, and they are here to help. Even government, that’s a gift from God right now. Even though he may not intervene in nature and our lives, WE are the Church. I don’t consider that “church” you mention, God’s church at all. They are sick, twisted, bitter people and deserve to be outcasts in society. Don’t pity them, as they will reap what they sow. Above all, IGNORE THEM.

  15. Shawn

    Oh and by the way, the weather channel has said that the tornado went 13.8 miles NOt 6 like they thought. It hit 6 miles of stuff “inside” joplin, but went passed Diamond MO.

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