Joplin held a memorial service this past Tuesday, the six month anniversary of the May 22 deadly tornado, to honor those who died. The tornado destroyed one third of the city and killed 161 people. The memorial service dedicated a plaque, listing all those killed, and a memorial fountain in Cunningham Park. Speakers for the event included Joplin Mayer Mike Woolston and Missouri Governor Jay Nixon. Both speakers praised Joplin’s ability to overcome the tragedy and move forward with the rebuilding process.
The city is well on its way to recovery. Many of the business effected by the storm have either relocated, rebuilt, or are in the process of rebuilding. Families effected have also began the rebuilding process. Homes have been rebuilt, including ten homes by Habitat for Humanity and seven homes by ABC’s Extreme Makeover: Home Edition.
Joplin has benefited from the services of many volunteers who have cleanup the city and helped in the construction of these seventeen homes. The city is a shining of example of what a community can accomplish when it works together. I will be going home to Missouri over Christmas break and plan to spend a day in Joplin and visit the memorials erected in Cunningham Park. I spent many years in Joplin at Missouri Southern State University and have family there. My ties to Joplin are strong and I am looking forward to returning, if only for a brief visit.
Source: Springfield News Leader