MIAMI VALLEY, Ohio (WDTN) – Here in the Miami Valley, mayors still managing their own tornado recoveries say they know exactly what their counterparts in Tennessee are going through after suffering through tornadoes last Memorial Day.
Video taken on Wednesday in a Trotwood neighborhood showed rebuilding from the Memorial Day tornadoes is still ongoing. Trotwood Mayor Mary McDonald said seeing the damage in Tennessee this week reminds her how it has come a long way.
“When I got up and saw it on television, my mind went back to the very first day, the day that it happened in our community,” said McDonald. “The idea of all of these people being displaced, where their families are, where their children are, where their pets are, all of those things came to my mind and it was just a feeling of deja vu.”
Both Trotwood and Celina each had one death from the tornadoes. Currently, Tennessee has confirmed at least 25.
“When my firefighters called me and let me know that we had one fatality, my heart immediately broke for the family and those that know the individual,” said Celina Mayor, Jeffrey Hazel. “I can only imagine those families and those communities (in Tennessee), my heart certainly goes out, even politically to the mayor and council folks in what they’re dealing with with their constituency.”
Both McDonald and Hazel said there is hope though. Through the devastation here in the Miami Valley, they saw the best in people and assure those in Tennessee that the community will come together.
“It’s hurtful, but its something that the city will be able to come back from,” said McDonald. “It’s just so early, you can’t see those things right now.”
“As elected officials, we can use state aid and presidential disaster funds financially, but that just helps to take care of some of the structures and buildings and infrastructure,” added Hazel. “At the end of the day, money doesn’t do a whole lot without people.”
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