The tornadoes that ravaged Kentucky have ripped away homes and businesses, demolished family heirlooms, and stolen lives, but the foundation of our Commonwealth is stronger than ever.
The people in our great state are our biggest asset, and until now a hidden treasure. We are the most resilient in the nation. Kentuckians are often unnoticed, but through this disaster we have a chance to show the rest of the country once again who we are. When times get tough we rise to the challenge. We take care of each other like family.
Those in West Kentucky are some of our very best. I’ve been privileged to travel this state. I’ve spent time in Mayfield, Kentucky, and worked to make it a safer place. The people there work hard and care deeply. They let a city boy like myself share a meal and their time. All through West Kentucky I have met, talked to, and been shown what it means to be a Kentuckian. To be generous with their time and what they have even when there is not always plenty. Across West Kentucky, there are similar stories – of coffee, donuts, good BBQ, and better people. Where someone like myself can walk into a diner in a suit without the knowledge to bring cash, and to watch with amazement as another Kentuckian offered to buy my meal. We are truly our brother’s keepers.
When someone in our community is having tough times and facing unprecedented loss, we have a chance to rebuild to make the future in honor of those lost and better than before. We will. We have done it before.
During the Great Flood of 1937 about 70 percent of Louisville was flooded forcing nearly 175,000 people to flee the city. We rebuilt.
In 1993 a blizzard dumped 30 inches of snow across Eastern and South Eastern Kentucky causing up to 10-foot snow drifts and killed 300. We dug out.
Each and every time there is disaster we remember. We show up. We give what we can. Whether it is time, money, blood, or food. We take care of one another. We live up to our motto. We give and we grow as community.
I’m proudest of us at our weakest moments.
If you would like to donate you can do so through the state portal at the LINK. The Western Kentucky Relief Fund has taken in $2 million in donations as of Sunday evening.