JOPLIN, Mo. — 3,650 days – or 10 years – that’s how long it’s been since the EF-5 tornado swept through Joplin. And Saturday thousands of residents spent their afternoon remembering.
The names of every life lost in Joplin on May 22nd, 2011.
Remembering those victims was the first priority as survivors, first responders and residents gathered in Cunningham Park.
“Seems like only yesterday sometimes,” said Jerry Cleair, Tornado Survivor.
Cleair lives just a few blocks from the park.
His home was a sheltered homeless neighbors ten years ago.
“Gathered them all at our house because our house had the least dmg or any in our neighborhood,” said Cleair.
Now he’s content to mark a decade of growth with a much bigger group.
That included then-Missouri Governor Jay Nixon, who reflected on the changes since his first view of the destruction.
“To go through there and not be able to tell the difference between what was a brick house or a stick house or what was a business, I have never in my life and i hope i never do SEE THAT LEVEL of destruction again,” said Jay Nixon, Former MO. Gov.
“My heart continues to break for all Joplin suffered on May 22nd 2011 – the lives lost, the thousands injured the homes destroyed the businesses interrupted, the rift,” said Joplin City Mayor Ryan Stanley.
While there were thousands of memories honored Saturday, the mayor pointed to the future and what Joplin can accomplish when the community works together.
“Ad omnia perata which translates to together we are ready for anything.”