Greensburg R.I.P.

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Greensburg, KS used to be an oasis for my family. Located approximately halfway between my house and my grandparents' house in far Western Kansas, it was a peaceful, prosperous, and pleasant farming town where one could break the endless monotony of the empty prairies. It had two claims to fame, and as children we inevitably demanded of our parents that they stop and let us investigate them: the "World's Largest Hand-Dug Well" (109' deep, shown), and the "Brenham Meteorite" (third largest stony-iron meteorite ever discovered). There was also a good family restaurant that we always stopped at whose owner had amassed a massive and impressive antique car collection. The last oasis of civilization for literally hundreds of miles.

On May 5th, 95% of the town was destroyed.

The 1,000 lb. meteorite was picked up and tossed out of its building.

The movie below is earlier from the same storm cell, when it formed in Oklahoma. This is the most dramatic footage of a tornado I've ever seen; you can see trees being uprooted less than 100 yards from the camera.

Apparently a group of people showed up a couple of days later from Mississippi, toting heavy equipment and trucks. When asked who they were, they said simply "We're here to help." It turns out that when Katrina hit New Orleans, it also wiped out their small town in Mississippi. Though amidst all the footage of the troubles of New Orleans, no one seemed to be paying attention to the devastation which had struck them. Then a delegation from the Mennonite Disaster Services from Western Kansas came and helped rebuild. The Mississippians wanted to repay the kindness of the Kansans.

Where the Danger Lies


chuck said...

Makes me glad I sent most of my Katrina donations to the Mennonite Disaster Services.

Buddy Larsen said...

Every time I hear something about the Mennonites, or the Amish, they are always quietly living their beliefs, and leading by example.

Buddy Larsen said...

Wonder where Madam Terrye has been keeping herself?

Buddy Larsen said...

But I guess tornados don't get Oklahomans just because they're Oklahomans.

Bartender to Oklahoman in Singapore bar: "Excuse, there's a tornado on the phone for you."