Tuesday, July 22, 2014

A Story of Progress, Inspiration, and Hope...

Not many things can turn your life upside down in a split second...but a tornado can..and did...for too many Winston Countians on April 28th, 2014. In the blink of an eye, a home was gone, a life was lost, a community severely damaged. Willie Shields (below) is one of our Winston Countians whose life was forever changed on April 28th.

Mr.Shields can recall what it sounded like that afternoon when the storm neared our community. As he looked out the front door of his sister's mobile home, he saw the sky turn black and saw the debris blowing by the front door. He heard the loud sound of items hitting the back of the mobile home and felt the sides begin to give. It was over in just a few a seconds but left rubble in its wake. His sister's mobile home was damaged, and his home was left in shambles. Mr. Shields, however, was able to give thanks that he and his sister were not harmed. The next chapter of his life had just begun.

In the aftermath of the tornado which struck our community on April 28th, many Winston Countians were left with a choice-give up or get busy. Mr. Shields chose to get busy with beginning this new chapter in life which was not chosen but which, nevertheless, is his to write. With the help of neighbors, government professionals, and WinstonSTRONG, Mr. Shields is now in his new temporary FEMA park model which will serve as his home until his new home can be rebuilt. He feels blessed to have had the support and outreach from his friends, family, and community, and his resolve to make this new chapter in his life the best that it can be serves to inspire all Winston Countians that suffered loss and heartache that good can come from difficulty and that difficulty can make us stronger.

Anyone with questions or needs related to the aftermath of the tornado on April 28th may feel free to call WinstonSTRONG case managers at 405-403-3404.