Goshen News, Goshen, IN

Opinion

April 28, 2013

Palm Sunday tornadoes a reminder of sudden danger

— It was a beautiful day, most people around these parts who can remember will tell you. It was one of those near-perfect, early spring days, they would likely say, a stark contrast to what early evening would bring on April 11, 1965.

Yes, the Palm Sunday tornado outbreak of 1965, is still very vivid in our local history five decades later. Those were days before Doppler Radar, 24-7 cable television, countywide siren warning systems and even seatbelts in most cars. So, when afternoon turned to early evening, many local residents had little or no warning that killer tornadoes were nearly on top of them.

A photo of twin, F-4 (out of 5) tornadoes chewing up the Midway Trailer Park between Goshen and Dunlap, became the iconic image of that day and, in a broader sense, our local history. In Elkhart and LaGrange counties alone 55 people were killed. Hundreds of homes were destroyed. The destruction was so dramatic and profound that the president of the United States felt compelled to visit.

Those were different days. If there was an exact repeat of the Palm Sunday scenario today, we have no doubt fewer lives would be lost because of better weather tracking, a superior warning system and more stringent building codes.

Still, we are reminded that mankind is little match for the fury of Mother Nature. Hurricane Sandy, Hurricane Katrina, and an EF-5 tornado that destroyed a third of Joplin, Mo. (a city comparable in size to Goshen), have been reminders of that fact. Unfortunately, we’ll see similar scenes in the years to come. Disaster can live in any zip code.

On Saturday we launched a five-part series about disaster preparedness in conjunction with our parent company Community Newspapers Holdings Inc. One of our sister papers is in Joplin. The first two parts of the series ran this weekend. The remaining three parts will span the next three Sundays. We’re not running this series to be alarmists or stir fear within the community. We’re running it because we’re realists, and the more we talk about being prepared for such unpredictable events, the more we actually might be prepared.

The memories of Palm Sunday are fading like the old newsprint where that remarkable history was chronicled. Forty-eight years is a long time ago. But the lessons of that day should stay with us always.

1
Text Only
Opinion
  • MAUREEN HAYDEN: 9/11 Commission chair scolds Congress Retired Congressman Lee Hamilton has warned of the perils of political ideology, calling the body where he spent 34 years “noxiously partisan.” Now, he worries the divide is downright dangerous. A co-chairman of the 9/11 Commission, Hamilton and fell

    July 28, 2014

  • GN140725 fair faces flowers 2 OUR VIEW: Another great fair is in the books Here at The Goshen News there are always mixed feelings when the Elkhart County 4-H Fair concludes for the year. On one hand, we’re as exhausted as anybody. This year’s nine-day event kicked off on July 18 and ran seemingly non-stop until the Mad Bom

    July 27, 2014 1 Photo

  • Full STEAM ahead for Fairfield Fairfield Community School students and parents are enjoying their summer holiday and the Elkhart County 4-H Fair this week, but looking ahead to the coming school year, there are big decisions to be made that will impact their lives.The school board

    July 26, 2014

  • MORTON MARCUS: Tax simplification in Indiana no simple matter The Governor and his select invitees to his closed tax conference last month praised simplifying Indiana’s tax code. It is an idea better loved by Americans than baseball, apple, pie or motherhood.There is no question that our national and state tax

    July 23, 2014

  • Rep. Kubacki still on a mission INDIANAPOLIS State Rep. Rebecca Kubacki had plans for her return to the General Assembly next January.The two-term Republican from Kosciusko County wanted to exert “full force” to roll back a law that prevents the children of undocumented immigrants

    July 21, 2014

  • Setting up the'LeBron Bayh' comeback saga INDIANAPOLIS — This could be the saga of “LeBron Bayh.”Like a thunderhead brewing in the distance, you could see this one coming. This was the progression: former state Democratic Dan Parker announces he will not become a candidate for mayor of India

    July 20, 2014

  • Maybe parks need to be watched 24/7 It was disturbing news last week when Goshen park officials found Rogers Park had suffered $5,000 in damage at the hand of vandals. Since vandalism is an ongoing problem in the city’s parks, we think it is time to elevate the conversation about findi

    July 20, 2014

  • Community gets behind try-athlon Saturday was another great day in Goshen. The 10th annual Kids’ Try-athlon came off with a bang. It is one of the signature events of the Goshen Parks and Recreation program, and appears to get bigger and better each year. This year, 360 kids from ag

    July 17, 2014

  • Let's go 'all-in' for 4-H fair's food drive Elkhart County is “all-in” for the upcoming food drive record attempt at the Elkhart County 4-H Fair.Fair organizers want the food drive to set a new Guinness Book of World Records mark for the most pounds of food collected during a one-day food driv

    July 16, 2014

  • GN140710 kosciusko county fair 12 OUR VIEW: 4-H is the foundation of local fairs Has it been a year already? It doesn’t seem too long ago when the crunching of metal and the whiff of overheating radiators from the annual Demolition Derby drew the curtain on the 2013 Elkhart County 4-H fair, one of the best-attended editions in lo

    July 13, 2014 1 Photo

Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.
AP Video
Looming Demand Could Undercut Flight Safety Raw: 2 Shells Hit Fuel Tank at Gaza Power Plant Raw: Massive Explosions From Airstrikes in Gaza Giant Ketchup Bottle Water Tower Up for Sale Easier Nuclear Construction Promises Fall Short Kerry: Humanitarian Cease-fire Efforts Continue Raw: Corruption Trial Begins for Former Va Gov. The Carbon Trap: US Exports Global Warming UN Security Council Calls for Gaza Cease-fire Traditional African Dishes Teach Healthy Eating 13 Struck by Lightning on Calif. Beach Baseball Hall of Famers Inducted Israel, Hamas Trade Fire Despite Truce in Gaza Italy's Nibali Set to Win First Tour De France Raw: Shipwrecked Concordia Completes Last Voyage Raw: Sea Turtle Hatchlings Emerge From Nest Raw: Massive Dust Storm Covers Phoenix 12-hour Cease-fire in Gaza Fighting Begins Raw: Bolivian Dancers Attempt to Break Record Raw: Israel, Palestine Supporters Rally in US
Poll

With military action and tensions escalating between Russia and Ukraine, as well as Israel and Palestine, are you worried that the U.S. and other nations may get drawn into these conflicts?

Yes, it is a great concern of mine
I’m a little worried, but not too much
No, I’m not worried at all
     View Results