By Andra Bryan Stefanoni
JOPLIN, Mo. —
The Lost Photos of Joplin project has scheduled additional claim days this month for tornado victims who are still searching for personal photos.
The first claim day will run from noon to 4 p.m. Saturday, April 13, at the Joplin Family Worship Center, 5290 E. 7th St. The second will run from 3 to 7 p.m. Thursday, April 18, at the Joplin Public Library, 300 S. Main St.
To date, the project has returned 15,563 photos displaced by the 2011 tornado to their rightful owners, according to Donna Turner, who coordinates the claim day events. However, they also have more than 20,000 photos that were collected after the tornado that have never been returned.
The group also has collected other tornado-strewn artifacts, ranging from embroidered table cloths and toys to baseball and football cards.
The Lost Photos project has been an undertaking of the First Baptist Church in Carthage, where the photos have been cleaned and archived. As recently as the end of February, photos were still being turned into the group.
Anyone who lost personal photos in the tornado may search the group’s new website at www.NationalDisasterPhotoRescue.net, where all photos are available for viewing.
Those who lost photos should check the site between now and the claim dates, tag the photos, and send a message with their name, address and telephone number to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Those who are unable to do so or lack Internet access may look through copies of each and every photo in binders made by the group, which may be arranged by calling Donna Turner at 417-358-7266.
Photos that are not identified and claimed will eventually be turned over to the Joplin Museum Complex for storage.