What started out as a joyful new listing for me, turned into a Tornado Tragedy. Yet the people are amazing. They are strong. They are sending us a message. As I walked among the debris and what remains of Diamond Creek Subdivision, in the City of Forney, Texas I was uplifed by the voices that continued to be an inspiration. There was no anger, just a stronger sense of community spirit. The people that I talked to used simple words, block after block they echoed the same message. By the time I got to the last block, I couldn't believe my eyes. The last row of houses across the street from Crosby Elementary School, were severely damaged; yet the school appeared untouched, saved, respectfully passed over without damage. Look at what I saw and try to imagine the voices of the people who live there.
"Wednesday, April 3 at approximately 3:42 p.m., the National Weather Service confirmed an EF-3, which had up to 150 mph wind struck Forney. Students from Crosby Elementary were transferred to Criswell Elementary until approximately 5:45 p.m. but not a hair on their heads were hurt."
“We are thankful for what we have left – each other.”
“Doors, colors, square footage – none of that matters compared to human life…"
“As long as we have each other, nothing else really matters, at all…”
"God bless the children, that's all that matters to me."
"It will take a lot to shatter the rest of my dreams, no matter what my family comes first."
"God created man, man created material things. My power comes from God. If man can build it, man can rebuild it."
"My dad is okay and that's all that counts!"
"The Forney ISD School Teachers did an excellent job protecting our children."
"My house across the street wasn't even touched. I feel guilty. I am thankful but I can't help but wonder why?"
"The only thing I'll every need again is my family."
"Not one human life was lost - this community was really blessed and the volunteers have been a blessing."
"Stuff, all of this is stuff, everything that counts is inside (man puts hand upon his heart)."
"I am so lucky, it could have been so much worse."
"About 95 homes were hit & 22 were completely destroyed but the good news is no was was killed isn't that a miracle!
"Flesh and Bone is all that really matters."
"I can smile because my girls are okay!!!"
When life catches us off guard, we can still have a positive attitude. This community did not allow the storm to blow out the light in their eyes, or cause them to be bitter. They are remarkable people who help one another. The police were patroling the area. People were giving out bottles of water. Volunteers were pitching in and picking up trash. Their hearts were not damaged. They all say, it's because of the children in this community that keeps them going. They will not allow themselves to be beaten by this storm. They have weathered it without catastrophy to human life and for that they are truly blessed. I am also blessed because I got to meet them, up front and personal. There were no major injuries - just incredible humanitarian efforts to keep moving on, just as life has been intended.
Story and photos by Patricia Feager, April 7, 2012. Copyrighted and protected.