Tornado Wreaks Havoc and Destruction in South

Claire McNeary

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Living in the fairly temperate climate conditions of Long Island, few Indian Ink readers have had to face the reality of a deadly tornado whirling into their community and leaving it completely devastated. Many people were sitting in the comfort of their homes ready to wind down and enjoy an easy Sunday. Unfortunately,  thousands of North Floridians, Georgians, and Mississippians had to face a tremulous trial of life and death this Sunday, January 22nd, as a tornado rips up the foundations of not only their buildings, but also of their lives.

This terrible natural disaster has already claimed at least 18 American lives since it started at 3:00 in the morning.  Seven people were killed after the tornado, with winds at an incredibly high 80 mph, whipped through the Sunshine Acres mobile home park in Cook County, Georgia. The effects of the tornado were devastating to all: it left the mobile homes destroyed and the remnants of its inhabitant’s lives strewn over acres of land. Similarly, two people were killed in their mobile homes in Brooks County, Georgia.

Even experts equipped with the experience to deal with tornados are devastated by the natural disaster, with Dougherty County’s emergency medical services director Greg Rowe saying “There are no words to tell you how bad this is, It’s just tornadoes and pure destruction.” When he spoke about the destruction he saw as he went out to help families, he described couches, chairs, and other remnants of human life tossed along the roads and land. Fire crews and search and rescue teams, many of whom had to respond on foot due to blocked roadways, continued throughout the night to pick through the rubble in search of potential survivors and trapped people.

The stories of the survivors paint a better picture of the extent of the destruction. One woman, Miss Mishyna Rollin, was forced to find refuge in her bathtub with her 2-year old sun as the roof of her house was ripped off. While Miss Rollin and her son were fortunate enough to reach shelter, any relief they might’ve felt was snatched away as the roof fell back down on her father and his girlfriend. As glass shattered and the doors of her house were torn to pieces, the greatly traumatized woman had no choice but to persevere in the bathtub until help came.

“We pretty much freaked,” she said reporter after first-responders came to her and her family’s rescue. No one in her family was killed, but some other families were not so lucky.

Hopefully everyone who has been affected by this tornado will speedily recover from the damage, and hopefully less disasters like this one will happen in the future.