Yesterday I attended the funeral of my aunt Betty who died at the age of 84, but was gone long before that to Alzheimerís. What Alzheimerís couldnít take from us were the memories and the photos that brought back a happier time of a wonderful woman.
After coming home from the funeral; I had a few more hours before leaving for Andover to set up a display and brochures for the OPRís table. That day marked 20 years ago when an F5 tornado hit Andover, KS. The article in The Wichita Eagle was a little misleading when it said more than 200 photos when the number was closer to 1,000+ http://www.kansas.com/2011/04/21/1816680/andover-will-try-to-find-photos.html
The unclaimed photos were arranged on tables in a horseshoe design as you walked into Andoverís city hall. There was a sign up sheet and a box of disposable gloves for people to put on as they sorted through the damaged photos. Outside of the hall was where I had a table along with the Red Cross and the emergency 1st responders. As people would walked by I would hand them a brochure and tell them about OPRís service. They were amazed at the results and were happy to hear that Andover City Hall would at a later date have OPRís come back to help. One of the city council members was so enthused about what we do that she grabbed some brochures and was passing them around to those inside that I had missed. Later I was asked to give a brief speech to the council about OPR. I have listed links about last night and even though we are not on TV---we did get the word out. In one of the videos, the man in the orange shirt was so happy to hear about OPR.
It was amazing to see people find photos that were missing that long. One lady found about 13 of her photos and others were only able to find 1 or 2. One lady I talked to found only one and it had a picture of her and her ex-husband. While not the most treasured photo, she was grateful her kids could have it. Some items were returned to Andover after being dropped some 100+ miles away.
Below are links to last night and the very last link is a video of the newscast 20 years ago.. Some parts of this video may be hard to watch and I cringe when I hear the man tells his frightened child there is no place to run from a tornado.http://www.kake.com/home/headlines/Families_Recall_Andover_Tornado_That_Claimed_Lives_Homes_120751154.htmlhttp://www.ksn.com/news/local/story/Tornado-surivivors-reclaim-memories-in-recovered/LpAZ8R21cE6Po8P73Lfkog.cspxhttp://www.kwch.com/news/kwch-news-mes-pictures-found-after-andover-torndado-can-be-claimed-at-city-hall-20110425,0,21507.storyhttp://www.youtube.com/v/FDn_aL6RIfo&rel=0