Monday, June 09, 2008

Remembering The Beecher Tornado

55 years ago on June 8, 1953 an area north of Flint Michigan was hit by a devastating tornado. It was the catalyst in this area for sirens, better weather reporting by the television stations and airport spotters and while horrible to a large community, brought a lot of neighbors near and far together to mourn and rebuild.

My mom was pregnant with me at the time and I have often thought that in utero experience is why I am so terrified of storms and wind in particular. Sadly, the Beecher area that was rebuilt has fallen to poverty, drugs and indifference. The high school that was rebuilt after the storm does not even have a sports field to play on but has turned out some of the best football, track and basketball players both college and pro from this county. There is just little parental influx into the education system and many will remember the area for the Kayla Rolland shooting story that Micheal Moore featured in Bowling for Columbine.

It rose from the ashes once before. It can be done again-but someone has to think it can . If you would like to see the original newspapers from 1953, click here, here, or here. It just is so eerie that today on the anniversary the area is hit again by wind, storms and tornadoes just as it was on the 50th anniversary.

2 comments:

  1. wow - that is eerie. It's been a crazy year for storms. Keep up the faith that the community will pull together.

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  2. My grandparents lived in Flint at that time and I think this was the tornado that my grandmother said the weather was perfectly fine --sunny, above their house and a very short distance away was the horrible tornado. We live in Mason Mi and on Sunday the wind was bad at my house---lost a few small trees in my neighborhood, but about 8 blocks south of us, there is major destruction where a very strong wind went the length of town, about a block wide, knocking huge old trees down on houses---lots of damage.

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