Sunday, November 17, 2013

the devastation of a town

My hometown made national news today.  Unfortunately.

I grew up in Washington, Illinois and graduated from Washington High School.  So did Phil.  He graduated WAY before me though.  Obviously.

Half of my immediate family still lives there. 

And what appears to have been an EF4 tornado ripped through Washington today. 

I couldn't reach my parents.  There was little to no cell service.

We were headed to their house and I was finally able to reach my sister.  Thankfully, they were all safe and their homes are intact.

Meanwhile, Phil managed to reach our friend Brent, who has helped us so much in the building of our new home.

He has lost his home.

His dad, who lived a block down, also lost his.

But they are safe.

Brent needed a ride to somewhere--anywhere--but by the time we got there, he had already made his way to his sister's home.

This is what we witnessed.

This is what's left of Brent's home.
No, Phil is not lighting a ciggie. 

I've never seen this type of destruction before in person.  It's overwhelming.

Brent's home was only blocks from my good friend's parents' house, so we continued to walk.  Their home is still standing, but missing half the roof.  They are safe.

Please pray for Washington, and those who have been devastated by this tornado.

I keep learning of more and more people I know who have lost everything.

It looks like a wasteland.


I am heartbroken for all those affected.

Please pray.


  1. That's so frightening. Prayers underway.


  2. Prayers! Yes, many prayers!
    I am so glad they were safe.
    Brought me right back to 1965 and the Fridley tornadoes in Minnesota.
    You never forget the devastation.

  3. Aw Andi, my heart goes out to those effected by these terrible storms. So much loss and devastation. I am and will continue to pray. I'm so glad your family is all safe.


  4. My's a miracle they are safe. Prayers for your friends and family and all those affected. It's horrifying.

  5. Oh Andie, I am so sorry for your friend and his family. I am so glad to see hear that your family are safe, Im just horrified at what youve shown. God bless those there struggling with this.

  6. Oh Andi, that is so devastating. Thank god your friends and family are safe. It's amazing none of hem were harmed! I will keep them in my prayers.

  7. Your pictures are unreal, and yet so real for those who lost their house. I'm happy your family is safe, and I hope your friend will find in him the energy to rebuild a house and a life.

  8. So sorry for the devastation. Keeping Illinois in my thoughts and prayers.

  9. Oh my. It looks like an atomic bomb went off. I live in tornado alley and it never gets any easier to look at. I'm so sorry. I'm glad you are safe!

  10. I'm stunned and so upset for the lives and homes that people have lost. I'm just outside Louisville, KY and we got extremely lucky as they thought we could have it bad as well, it's just heartbreaking. Lots of prayers...

  11. Those photos look horrible! You cannot make anything out of that rubble... just think of all of the personal items those people lost. I hope not many people were injured... a coworker of mine has family there and they got hit pretty bad! So, so sad!

  12. How devastating. I am so glad that your family and friends are all safe Andi.

  13. gah i knew you guys didnt build in washington--but was wondering how you were doing yesterday, my bff lives there...shes fine, her house is fine too, but i was also in panic mode when i couldnt get through to her at first yesterday morning...

    although it's hard losing it can be rebuilt. glad your peoples are safe.

  14. OH my devastating and scary. I can not even imagine. I'm so sorry! But so glad everyone seems to be safe. Still.... :(


  15. Oh Andi, this is so devastating. I am glad to hear your family and friends are safe, I can only imagine the panic when you were not able to get ahold of people. My thoughts and prayers are with your home town, today. Love ya.

  16. Tornado's are terrifying. They can wipe out homes but they can't wipe out the sense of community. I have a feeling you and Philly will be right there helping Brent.

  17. Oh Andi, how devastating. I can't imagine. We here in blogland are so busy trying to make our houses look just right and something like this brings it all down to what is important. I hope your friends and family can overcome this in time. Hugs to you.

  18. Oh my gosh... that's so terrible. I can't even imagine what it feels like to see that in person, or to lose your home like that. I'm so glad everyone is safe.

  19. When I saw on the news about the tornado I though I wonder if anyone I know is affected, it is good news that your family are ok and terrible news about all the damage that has been done.

    1. It's just crazy in person. I've seen so many pictures of tornado destruction, but nothing compares to seeing it in person. It's just awful. :(

  20. This makes my heart hurt. I try to imagine what it's like to have your home wiped out in a matter of minutes... it's incomprehensible.

  21. Oh, Andi. I have no words. It's heartbreaking and I'm sorry....

  22. Unbelievable, sad and hard to express the horror and sadness in those photos...

  23. I can't imagine what it must have been like to live through this. It seems we are experiencing more natural disasters than ever before. I feel so badly for these that have lost everything.

  24. I am so sorry to see what happened to your hometown……I'm sure in person it is even more stunning than the images we are seeing on TV…..what a blessing that there were so few deaths….amazing when you consider the wreckage.

  25. Our hearts, love and prayers go to all those affected. Nature has a way of doing things her own way. They will rebuild. Somethings may never be replaced, but they are safe and sound.

  26. Oh my gosh! I am glad your family is okay, but I am so sorry for your friends. We were hiding out in the basement in Chicago when the sirens went off as I made the kids wear helmets. When you sit through as many tornado sirens as people in the Midwest, you do sometimes forget the very real devastation these things cause. Prayers and love to everyone in Washington!


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