May 22, 2011
This Sunday afternoon, Joplin was struck by a category F5 tornado with wind speeds up to 250mph. The twister grew to a width of a mile wide and left a devastating path of distruction. Imagine a rock moving at 250mph, a 2x4, a steel beam, a car, milions of objects thrown around like a blender. Entire trees stripped of bark, uprooted, steel bent and twister like plastic, everything in it's path was completely destroyed. 158 people fell victim to this tornado with over 1000 injured. Joplin is close to my heart. Not only a couple hours from where I grew up, but I've worked several jobs there and have many friends living there. When I heard about the tornado I booked the next flight from LA. I volunteered with others to do many things... transport/deliver supplies, cut fallen trees, search, and rescue with cadaver dogs. To this day it's one of the worst sites of destruction I have ever seen.