One year later, but still on our minds

Published 3:50 pm Tuesday, March 3, 2020

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year ago today, Lee County and the state of Alabama were still picking up the pieces after a devastating tornado hit Beauregard on March 3.

A total of 23 people died in the tornado, but countless others had their life touched in some way or another. It’s been amazing to watch as people came together over the last year to give to the tornado victims and their families.

The Fuller Center led a nationwide project to build new homes and President Donald Trump visited the area to see victims and bring some peace to a region that had been through a lot.

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A year later, we think there are a couple of important things to keep in mind.

First, all of the work in Beauregard — a lot of it led by Chambers County residents — show what can happen when we put differences aside and work together. Black or white, Republican or Democrat, Auburn fan or Alabama fan, at the end of the day, we’re all just people trying to get through life the best we can.

And when bad things happen, it’s amazing how other people always seem to be there to help out.

Secondly, the healing process isn’t over in Lee County. We’re sure many woke up this week with flashbacks.

Hopefully, most of the families affected have stabilized themselves again and are back to normal life, but for many we realize life will not ever be the same.

Lastly, this date on the calendar is a clear reminder that we’re back in tornado season in Alabama. The spring is always the time when we seem to get the strongest storms, so now is the time to prepare.

Other areas of the South have already been impacted by strong tornadoes this March. A tornado hit parts of Tennessee overnight Tuesday, killing several people.

Chambers County and other parts of Alabama were under a tornado watch for a brief portion of the morning as the rest of that storm system came through the area.

The best way to prepare for severe weather is to make a plan, something we wrote about a few weeks ago for Severe Weather Preparedness Week.

Make sure you follow the weather, know when bad storms are coming and ensure you have a way to get severe weather information overnight.

It feels like just yesterday everyone was glued to coverage in Beauregard.

Hopefully, it’ll never happen again, but it’s best to be prepared, just in case.