The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Opinion

May 22, 2012

Our View: Remembering and moving on

The community — make that the nation — will spend today remembering the 161 lives lost in the most destructive tornado in modern-day record keeping.

Some will walk through the tornado’s path, perhaps mentally reliving past horrors, and then putting old feelings aside.

Others will look to the future, attending groundbreaking ceremonies for schools and businesses. Both of Joplin’s hospitals will remember the valiant efforts of their doctors and nurses and staff in the hours, days and months after an EF-5 tornado hit Joplin.

Heroes, young and old, will be heralded all across our town.

Those who live outside our community will be watching the newscasts and the websites as they follow, and remembering with us.

But at the end of May 22 — one year later — we know that our town is ready to move forward.

We’ve spent the year moving mountains of debris, establishing funds for long-term recovery, holding meetings to get the public’s vision of what tomorrow holds. We have a blueprint. We have the tools and we have the urgency.

There are families living in trailers who need help getting into homes. There are neighborhoods to plan, parks to rebuild and memorials to create that will pay tribute to all.

It is right and appropriate that we have spent the last year honoring those who lost their lives and their homes. But we all agree that we now need to focus on actions that will help all of us move forward.

The hard work still remains.

Let’s look ahead to the vision of a new Joplin, but let’s never forget those things we lost.

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