arkansas, current events, tornado

Help for Arkansas Tornado Victims

It’s this time of year that I am often glad I no longer live in Arkansas because of the volatile weather spring often brings. The problem with that, however, is my family and many friends still live there.

And so when I start seeing reports of this or that online I am again the jumpy teenager wondering if that sound was thunder or a gush of wind or some other thing to indicate that trouble is on the way — and I am HUNDREDS of miles from said weather.

But it doesn’t matter. When you grow up with the threat of tornadoes and in a community that has been hit hard by these unpredictable storms, the memory of that fear doesn’t go away. It just goes dormant.

So last night when I saw that Central Arkansas was (again) hit with storms, I immediately started texting my family. As I’m waiting to hear back, I see that Vilonia has again been hit. My dad lives in Vilonia.

The view from my Dad’s front porch in Vilonia in March. I’m sure it’s different now.

For the record, I eventually heard from him. He said he’s OK, but texts and calls aren’t coming through in a timely manner right now. So I don’t really know what level of “OK” he is. But I know he’s OK enough to text me, so that’ll do for now. Especially because I’m pretty sure he’s out there helping where he can right now. Once a cop, always a cop.

I also know many folks in that area are far from OK. Below are links to ways you can help. Please do – if you have a roof over your head and your family is safe, you are better off than a lot of people right now.

4 thoughts on “Help for Arkansas Tornado Victims

  1. Vilonia is my hometown and my family still live there even though I live in Texas now. My son and his family lost everything for the 2nd time in 3 years. Total devastation. My parents are ok and there home was not hit but they have no water or electricity. I haven’t been able to text today with them but did last night for a few minutes. Have you seen Main Street? It is totally gone. It is surreal. I am just heart sick. I am glad your dad is ok!

    1. It’s so hard to see those pictures of the destruction. I didn’t grow up in Vilonia (Greers Ferry is where I lived) but I was just in Vilonia 6 weeks ago. It’s just tough to imagine. I’m so thankful my Dad is OK – he just had some trees down.

  2. I, too, lived in the area (just over the white county line, Elpaso) and have experienced my share of devastation caused by these massive tornados. Like you, I decided to leave Arkansas, in part because of the weather. I still have family there also. I watch doplar radar every time there is a storm like this and try to maintain contact until it passes. As beautiful as Arkansas is, I simply couldn’t do it anymore. It breaks my heart to see this again… my brother lived on Church Street for years, its unrecognizable now. I’m glad your dad is ok, and pray for those affected by this latest blast of devastation.

    1. I just don’t remember the weather being this bad there. Always there was a threat of tornadoes – a bad one came through Greers Ferry a couple of years before we moved to the area – but I was just there at the beginning of March and we were nearly stuck on Hwy 64 in a sleet storm. My flight was cancelled. This was only 6 weeks or so ago. It’s just unbelievable.

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