In the aftermath of the tornadoes that ravaged Alabama and other regions of the South, one woman has helped victims piece together the lost fragments of their lives by starting a Facebook page. It’s a virtual lost-and-found where people are connecting over priceless personal items sucked up and spat out by the tornadoes.
Pictures and Documents found after the April 27, 2011 Tornadoes has reunited over 40 tornado-strewn items with their owners, including photos, a high school diploma and an heirloom quilt. The Facebook page is also seeking to return hundreds of lost letters, legal documents, greeting cards, countless more photos and even a fetal ultrasound.
The creator of the Facebook page, Patty Bullion, was spared by the tornado. But as it passed over her house in Lester, AL, the tornado left a trail of someone else’s photographs scattered about her yard. Moved by the faces of these strangers, Bullion posted the pictures to Facebook. Soon, others began uploading images of their own found items, some discovered miles away from the tornado zone.
According to MSNBC, the Facebook page has over 600 items looking for a home, but that number continues to grow as residents sift through the rubble. The rescued scraps are irreplaceable mementos. Even the paper minutia of daily life holds significance when plucked from the wreckage.
Bullion mentions several cancelled checks belonging to a man killed by the tornadoes. “[T]hey (relatives) would like it back,” she told MSNBC. Others have identified their lost loved ones in photographs uploaded to the page.
Surprised yet grateful that the Facebook page has garnered such attention, Bullion plans to keep the page online at least as long as users keep posting.
Photo credit: Patrick Byrne (Creative Commons Share Alike)