Joplin, Missouri Emerging From The Rubble

On May 22, 2011 the lives of the people of Joplin, Missouri, were changed forever as an EF-5 tornado struck around dinner time, crushing nearly a third of the city. It pounded about 5,000 buildings, knocked out power and cellphone service for many, and damaged water treatment and sewage plants. The tangled remains of cars and trucks were overturned and thrown against buildings and trees. Some blocks were jagged mounds of debris, while others were stripped to utter emptiness: just foundations of homes and tree trunks — no leaves, no branches, no bark. A city changed forever and 160 lives lost, a number that may still rise as others succumb to wounds and illness. The list of the missing totaled 1,500 – and slowly dwindled as people were rescued and the fate of many confirmed. As the people of Joplin pull themselves out of the rubble and put their lives back together, there is a strong spirit of hope, as midwestern love meets survivors guilt to drive a surge of selflessness, those with something left sharing with those who have nothing.