Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Anniversary of the Joplin Tornado

We were in Joplin a week before the May 22 anniversary of the tornado that killed 161 people and damaged so much of Joplin.  We took Quil and Micah to Cunningham Park, which has been rebuilt from its total devastation.  We didn't take many pictures, but just these few.  We are looking at pieces of miscellaneous debris from the tornado that have been embedded in three stones of memorial.
 Rowen and I drove around the main streets of the tornado devastation.  So much has been or is being rebuilt, but so much is still vacant.  A few ruined houses are still there, not taken away, a stark reminder of what happened.  I didn't want pictures of it; it is still very sad.

We saw this memorial in Cunningham Park, but I got this image off of Facebook, as we didn't take a picture of it that night.

I copied the following from Facebook, from Ozark Christian College's page.  This made me cry a year ago; it still does.  

NATALIA PUEBLA had just finished her first year at Ozark Christian College. A 4.0 student, Natalia often flashed her mischievous smile. She loved to flick the hat off her grandpa's head or offer her hand to shake, only to pull it back at the last moment with a grin.

Most of all, Natalia loved Jesus. She could not have known she was making her last Facebook post that Sunday afternoon, but she could not have chosen one more appropriate: the lyrics of 'In Christ Alone.' "In Christ alone my hope is found. He is my light, my strength, my song. This Cornerstone, this solid ground, firm through the fiercest drought and storm."

Natalia was in church when the tornado hit. She covered a seven-year-old child with her body and began to pray out loud. Her pastor said later he could hear her praying and then suddenly came silence. She died talking with the Lord she was preparing to meet.

After hearing of Natalia's passing. OCC professor Doug Welch returned to his home and glanced at a stack of final paper's still waiting to be graded. Natalia's paper happened to be on the top of the stack, and the topic of her paper: the resurrection of Christ. He wrote, "It's a good paper, deserving of an A . . . but she knows this truth far better now."

Copy from the OCC Publication: "In the Midst of the Storm."  Natalia is center in this picture.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hi Albertons,
Thank you for posting the story about Natalia. It really blessed me. Could Beth publish it in GGN? I think it might be a blessing to others as well.
You are in our prayers.
Beth Ann