I can honestly say I have only good things to say about the people in the area. You do not see these people sitting around waiting for FEMA to show up. You don't see them asking for hand outs. You don't see them sitting on their front porch waiting for someone to bring them their next meal.
What you do see are typical Midwesterners with their amazing work ethics getting down to the business of rebuilding their community and helping each other out. You can't keep these people down. They just pull themselves up by their boot straps and get to work. They are not waiting for government hand outs.
The cleanup is complete in the town. A lot of farmers still have cleanup to complete. I wonder how they will harvest their crops with all the debris left in the fields. I did see a lot piled near the edges of the fields but I am sure there is a lot still out there. Many such details no one thinks about post-storm.
Visiting the town for me was a very somber experience. I just wanted to do something to help each and every person. Yes, I had all ready given $$ through our church but driving through the town I wanted to do more, even if it was give someone a hug. That is how driving through the town made me feel.
I wanted to take photos to share with everyone to see what has happened to the town and people after it is no longer in the news. I felt so guilty for taking pictures but it wasn't to take advantage of anyone, rather I want to pay homage to these strong and wonderful people!!!!
So here is how the town looks as of mid August 2014 - two months post storm.
No one is out of line at all when they say downtown is gone. There is the library and a couple other buildings still standing. The rest of main street consists of dirt lots. This building has the big OK sprayed on it so I am assuming that means the building is structurally sound. Even so, it is going to take a lot of work to get is usable again. There were two buildings on this side of the street that had OK sprayed on them and were still standing.
This final photo is of a farm north east of the town about 2 miles farther along in the tornadoes path. The house was spared although heavily damaged but most of the outbuildings and trees are a total loss.