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Monday, April 18, 2011

Best wishes and hopes for those suffering and lost in North Carolina and Virginia

Our obsession with an extremely loud and aggressive wild turkey we named the screamer almost got us in a serious bind Saturday afternoon.   Friday night, we prepped to get back out and chase that wily old bird at sunrise.  I reviewed the weather forecast before going to bed and apparently we were due some fast moving, but severe storms late.  However, there was only a 30% or less chance of rain before noon.
 I awakened to some serious wind about 4:45 am and went back to bed.   Later, 9:00 am, the wind was still too strong for an accurate bow shot so we ran a few errands and planned to get back out later in the afternoon.  About 2:00 pm, the skies were grey, wind manageable and we figured the forecasts were 'off' as the storms never materialized.  We loaded up the truck and were about to head out when I heard something about a “tornado watch” covering central North Carolina. 

Something told me to hold tight.
Over the next 2 hours, I watched in disbelief as forecasters tracked a large (soon to be F3) tornado through the counties of Lee, Wake, Franklin, Vance, and Granville and on to Bertie before settling into Virginia.  The cities of Sanford, Raleigh, and surrounding areas were at the mercy of a very serious tornado.  At one point, there were 8 different twisters traveling through central North Carolina towards Virginia.  Fortunately for us the largest funnel passed about 5 or so miles to the east.  The storm was the worst I’d seen in years!  Golf ball sized hail, blinding rain, wind gusts strong enough to give mature pines all they could handle.  I could only imagine being caught in that out in the field or woods had I not stopped. 
Sunday afternoon was a perfect day to clean up the lawn, light the grill and set the garden.  As I cut the lawn, I found reminders of the suffering others in the area were enduring.  Spread about the lawn I found various bits of debris:  wood, siding, insulation even parts of roof shingles.  These bits of debris were a part of someone’s home miles away.  I could not help but wonder: Were they safe?  Do they have shelter?  Did they survive?  Last count, 23 lost their lives in North Carolina, over 50 across Georgia the Carolinas and Virginia.  It was sobering to watch the news.  Suddenly my silly pursuit seemed just that. 

I pray the best for all those missing, injured and lost Saturday in central North Carolina and Virginia.


  1. My brother lives right across the VA/NC line.......he and his buddies broke camp on saturday morning (2 days early) and got home by noon. They were glad they did.

  2. I am sure. An update this weekend from NOAA (?), confirmed 28 tornadoes from EF0 - EF3 stretched from the Peidmont of NC through southern virginina including tidewater. The storm tracked so quickly that if you were not paying attention to updates, it would have been on top of you quickly. NC generally has about 12 tornadoes per year! This one storm doubled the historical average.