Let There Be Light

Today we mark the beginning of the day after a devastating tornado ripped through Tuscaloosa, Ala, the home of the University of Alabama.

The time– 3:15 a.m.  Central Daylight Time,

The day, Thursday, April 28, 2011, the day after a devastating tornado ripped through the commercial center of West Alabama– Tuscaloosa.

Thanks to a battery-operated cassette radio that I’ve had for more than 25 years, I was able to stay in touch with the outside world.

D-batteries and my radio got me through the last 9 hours.   Well, I slept about four of those hours.

But the restoration of power to my home makes all the difference.

For hundreds here in Alabama, that is not the story.

It was expected,. It was anticipated– bad weather, severe weather.

But, you have to understand the threat of severe weather is not an uncommon occurrence here.

A tornado that  goes down one of the busiest east-west thoroughfares in town– that is uncommon.

While I lament the inconvenience of being without power for 9 hours, I pray for those families who’ve lost their loved ones, their homes, their life’s belongings.

As the morning news cycle begins shortly, it will be interesting to see how the world sees this college town, the epicenter of the devastation that has affected so much of the Southern United States.

I thank God for sparing my life.  Now I must know I’ve been spared for a reason– blessed to be a blessing to someone else.

Author: George Daniels

George L. Daniels is an associate professor of journalism at the University of Alabama. After spending eight years in the local television newsroom working as a producer at stations in Richmond, Virginia; Cincinnati, Ohio; and Atlanta, Georgia, Daniels moved from the newsroom to the classroom. He’s conducted research on diversity issues in the media workplace and change in the television newsroom as well as media convergence. Before going to work in television news, Daniels worked briefly as a freelance writer for The Richmond Free Press in his hometown of Richmond, Va.

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