I loved this man. (click on the photo to see up close)
He was so much like my father, always joking, a big cuddly teddy bear of a man. This photo was taken just 2 weeks ago tomorrow, in front of his basket shoppe. I have probably made 50+ baskets here since I moved to middle America. We were planning a progressive dinner on the 31st to end at their house for a s'mores bonfire.
This is his wife. Isn't she beautiful?
I snapped this photo because her top matched her phlox so perfectly. She is the reason I went on to become a teacher, she encouraged me.
Yesterday his life was taken by a tornado. He was upstairs watching the weather on the tv, insisting everything was fine and she went into a closet downstairs with the Bichon. When the winds calmed down she came out and there was no upstairs. She found him outside.
We have over 13 families in our little country church with from some damage to total loss of their homes. My Sweet Hubby spent the day helping to clear debris and cut limbs so that what valuables and memorabilia that could be found could be retrieved. When I came to help this afternoon, I found the swing that we were sitting on in that photo:
Here is a pic of the shoppe:
That's all I can say. I will miss him dearly. There so little salvageable. They built this home with their own hands about 25 years ago. Now, 50 years of memories and earthly belongings are strewn about the treetops or broken and twisted into useless debris.
Their "beautiful" home:
You are looking at the fireplace in their dining room and kitchen area. There was a gorgeous plateglass window that looked over the valley, always 25-50 hummingbirds during the summer. The sunroom, 2 car attached garage and total upstairs completely gone. This home was over 2000 sf. Somehow, the bedroom was intact including all clothes in the closet and the bed still made. She was in the bedroom closet with her head under the bottom shelf.
I was rather irritated by the tv news crews that were traipsing from home to home. They seemed to hover and then flit on to the next suffering family, offering no help, just noseyness. (the one at the bottom of this post was sensitive and kind)
Instead, my Sweet Husband said one had commented earlier in the day that we all seemed too upbeat. Sweet Hubby replied that we serve an Awesome God who is All Powerful, we are not destroyed by tragedy, we are bound tighter together with Joy that our dear friend is in a better place. It is we who are sad, but we have Hope. The reporter walked away shaking his head, not understanding the peace. Why do people see bad things in God's power? Instead, I would think there would be reverance and if not that, fear!
I don't know if I will publish the rest of the photos I have, more of these dear friends' home and of across the road, some more dear friends. I think for now this is all I can handle. Please pray for hurting friends and family. There are over 12 lost lives just in our area. Pray for me. Pray for my beautiful friend above and her 2 daughters and granddaughters, one of whose husband lost 4 more family members in a car that was caught in the sudden storm. Or pray to know God's peace.