Wednesday, February 06, 2008

The Daniels Family

This is the home of "The Daniels Family" in Mountain View. They live at the foot of the mountain where the tornado entered the city of Mountain View. Their house is a total loss. I met The Daniels Family while I walked around the city talking with folks. I wanted to talk with the victims and tell them we are praying for them. I also wanted to ask if they needed any help. I know I can't offer much, but if they needed help lifting, cleaning, or searching... I would be happy to lend a hand.

As I walked up to their home, they were searching through the rubble, looking for anything they could salvage. Mr. Daniels smiled at me and said, "Ryan, you were the last voice I heard before it hit". They had taken cover, but they still had their TV turned up to hear the latest information.

As I stepped on to their foundation, Mrs. Daniels walked up and also had a smile on her face. (It was amazing how many people can smile in the midst of tragedy.) She shook my hand, but then quickly apologized. She still had some blood on her arm, but I didn't care a bit.

She pointed at a brand new (busted) HD television and said, "you were the last thing on that TV". . . .It was one of the oddest feelings I have ever had in my professional career. I was speechless. . . .I did not know if I should cry or say "thanks for watching", like we typically tell people at the grocery store when they say they watch KAIT. Even now, I'm still at a loss for words.

Mrs. Daniels then gave me big hug.

It's an honor to get a compliment like the one I got from The Daniels family, but I never know what to say. I have never been the type to accept a compliment well. I always try to match a compliment with another compliment or I just brush it off.

The picture below is where The Daniels Family took shelter. They were in the hallway, right by the open door. They were covered with a comforter when the walls started coming in on them. It sure was great to see them with only a few scrapes today!

There are many other families that are not so blessed this evening though. Please continue to keep them in your prayers and continue to pray for all of those that are picking up the pieces to their life this week.

This was the deadliest tornado outbreak in 11 years for our state. The next time we have a tornado outbreak like this one, I want NO death. That will be my goal every single time I am on-air. If we prepare people and educate people better about tornado safety ... we can avoid deaths.

Have a good night,


Diane J. said...

Take the compliment in the spirit in which it was offered, Ryan. Your business is not just a job, it makes a real difference in people's lives, sometimes quite literally. A few minutes warning can mean the difference between life and death.

My sincerest thanks to you, Sarah, Chris, and all those behind the scenes who worked so hard to bring us the latest information so that we could be as safe as possible.

Y'all truly are making a difference in our lives.

Thanks again,


gkbixler said...

I appreciate you showing the devestation from Ark as we used to live there. However, I feel that the news media, not coming down on you personally, isn't covering all the areas that were hit, just Atkins, AR. We have family and friends that lost friends, neibors, in Clinton, AR. From reports, it was hit worse than Atkins in the kind of destruction in encoutered. We also have friends in Mtn. Home who lost their home, as well as Highland (Ash Flat) who lost their church, and parsonage. Just think the media should show all effects of the storm and not just one town or two. Thanks for your blog as I read it every day.

Jason H said...

Man, it sure would be hard to avoid all deaths. It's just so difficult with as many trailers, and old wooden houses in this part of Arkansas. Some times I guess it don't even help what kind of house you live in. I seen some nice brick houses with nothing standing. I guess Having a cellar is the safest thing you could do. Being in a house in it's safest place doesn't even help sometime.

I guess below the ground is the only safe place for an F4, or 5.

Pocahontas should have our sirens ready to go now.....Did Highland have any ?

Kathy aka kface said...

Ryan, my thoughts and prayers are with all of you in Arkansas, in particular those who suffered such great losses. I am SO PROUD of YOU and your co-workers for doing such a great job keeping your watchers updated before, during and after the tornadoes; I know you were tired and feel sure I speak for all in your area when I say THANK YOU !! God Bless You and your family, who had to be without you while you worked such long hours ... Jenn, Shad & George ... and also blessings to your co-workers. Keep up the great work, we here in Tennessee enjoy "trying" to keep up with YOU !