Where Were You April 16, 1998

I wished I had a laundry room and 
not a laundry closet I would have it decorative
so cute....loving the signs.

Usually you would not be able to go
back 20 years and tell about a certain day
that long ago. But, for April 16, 1998 I can tell
you about that day in Nashville.

The day started off rocky.  Listening to the 
news, and watching the weather I decided
to go into work late and almost decided to
not send my kids to school. 
There were storms all over west TN with
one tornado after another hitting on 
its route to Middle TN. 

I finally headed out to work. Parking in the
employee parking lot a few blocks from
where I worked. Weather was still iffy. 
I entered the basement of the Andrew Jackson Bldg.
(where I worked for the printing division for the 
state of TN). Everyone was talking about the
weather and I told them it would be okay,
that just a week before I saw a special on 
TV that stated tornado's never hit downtown
areas. Being 20 yrs than I am now and not so
in tune to tornado's I thought that sounded good.
Not questioning how is that possible and how
does a tornado know if its a town or 
residential area? 

I was in the purchasing section for printing
and as I am sitting there working on and 
 processing orders. As I was doing that my phone
rang, it was Pat from our warehouse blocks away.
He said that he just watched a tornado go past
headed our way. 
Then the speaker all over the bldg that we all needed
to take cover, people were being pulled off the 
streets and sent to the basement where we were. 
Emergency generators came on after all the lights
went out. We buckled down. 

I also had my radio on so I was just listening 
to it all. Once it was called all clear I decided
I was heading out. The radio had announced it was
headed right to my mom's direction and the 
direction of where my children were. 

Had an issue getting out of town. Ringling Brothers
had been putting on a show the night before and the up
coming nights, they had a semi trailer that had been picked
up and thrown across the road. 
But as I walked out of my bldg. this is the site
I saw. 

The bldg. next door.

The bank bldg across the street.

I got down to parking lot. Cars where slammed into
each other, windows blown out...got to my 
truck, all was well. Just a piece of installation 
sticking out between the cab and bed. WOW...

Interstate was already packed, I took the back way
home. Coming to my son's school first. I picked him
up and he was scared to death. They all had been moved
to the hall and the tornado, not touching them but hit 
all around them. 

Drove a little more down the road to turn into my
moms neighborhood, everything seemed okay when 
I first entered. But with her living in the back of the hood
I ran into issues. Every street leading to her home 
was blocked. 

right up the street from moms house. 

(All these pics were taken the next day). 

Finally after trying all roads I saw someone
run over a wire in the road and nothing
happened so I rode over it also, getting to 
my mom's. 
Mom, my daughter and niece had gone
to the basement and crawled under the stairway.
Amber held onto Holly, my niece while they 
heard the tornado go over. Mom lost
a tree and some siding off the house,
but thank goodness that was all. 
It could have been worse. 

After checking on family around we headed home.
Driving down the main road to my house at sunset we
drive past the Hermitage, Home of President 
Andrew Jackson's home and Tulip Grove (where
Jackson's niece lived). Tulip Grove in the sunset 
looked like a war zone, it reminded me of the pic
of Tara (home from Gone with the Wind) after the 
war. Trees were stripped of the leaves, all bare, trees
up rooted....I just wanted to get home and see 
how my place fared. 

Got home, my place was fine. The front of the 
neighborhood took a little hit.

Course all these pics were taken the next day
as I traveled downtown, to East Nashville that 
got hit the worse and my area. 
You know me...I have to have pics of things 
around me. 

Here are a few more pics of East Nashville.

More from downtown...
and by the way, tornado's will and can hit
downtown areas!!
DUH again!

Bent this sign right over.

This is the bldg next to that sign. 
A restaurant that had recently moved. 

So....that was how my April 16, 1998 
turned out. My mom and kids were safe,
my place was safe. Nashville recovered just
like we recovered the floods of 2010.
And yes, I was out with my camera then also. 

Today, thank goodness no tornado's reported
to take place here today!

Keep in mind, this is not the first 
tornado that has traveled over my
house. Yes before we had a small one
that went over but not hitting the ground. 
It took and twisted my crepe myrtle tree
and it grew twisted around for years until
it finally straightened out and just a 
few years ago Dakota and I sitting here
in our safe place one went over touching 
down in Mt Juliet, and took out the 
Dollar General store. Just 7 mins from
my home. I have been lucky.

Thanks for stopping in and reading this long



Anonymous said…
I live a quarter of a mile from the Hackleburg F5 tornado on April 27, 2011 so I know your terror. We didn't have a scratch from this monster tornado but a member of our church was killed. I have always been terrified since the April 3, 1974 tornado came through our county. I belive they follow paths because the same places have been hit too many times. I remember the day you wrote about because I to thought cities were safe. Have a great day. Sharon
Rain said…
Wow Pam...it's incomprehensible to me because we just don't get tornadoes here...well, there have been a few labeled as F1 and F2...but that's when we have extremely humid and unstable air masses...don't happen often. What a story though, thanks for sharing it, those photos made me sad for all the people who lost their homes.

PS: We are under so much stress lately...the Stella and Pavlov situation...we've reached out limit. We called our friend and told him enough was enough, seven months of babysitting his dogs when it was supposed to be 1 week...what with Jack's situation, we realized we can't be so generous anymore. He is supposed to give us news this week as to whether he's coming himself to get them by mid-May or if he has someone to babysit them...so...my blogs have been neglected lately...and it's the Thoughts blog I should NOT be neglecting when I'm so stressed because my spiritual side needs to keep me strong. Thanks for your comment...if we don't lose power today (ice storm currently) I'll be posting something there. You're very sweet you know? :)
Christine said…
Horrible memories! Toronto looks snowed in for a 3rd day.
Sandra said…
we watched all the horrible news today of the twisters from yesterday, much like this and some worse. i know i would remember it if i were there. glad you are safe today and were safe each time one threatened.
Liz Hinds said…
Wow! A tornado must be so scary. And so much destruction.
Sandee said…
Oh my. I've been in a hurricane and earthquakes, but never a tornado. Scary and then some. I'm so happy you and yours were okay.

Have a fabulous day and week. ♥
Ann said…
A tornado went through the neighborhood I live in back in 1985. It was a few years before I moved here so I didn't experience it but it was quite devastating to the area.
Jeanie said…
Oh Pam, of course you remember. How devastating and frightening that had to be. Tornadoes are so fast and so lethal. I'm grateful you and your family were all right but I'll bet you heed every warning when you hear them now. I sure would!
Rhodesia said…
Oh wow, that certainly is a date that you would remember, Scary stuff and glad that you were OK. Something I hope never to experience. Have a good week Diane
Jeanna said…
I love that it's self-serve and on the other hand you can serve yourself 24/7. It looks clean and warm, the opposite of my living room right now. I'd love to decorate one, my mother has always had a nice laundry room/pantry and it's been a life-saver.
From the comments not like this one if you hunkered down there during a tornado. Must have been quite the storm if you remember the date.
Brian said…
The Dad remembers that awful storm that hit your area and we're all glad you were okay.
Goodness ... devastating and so frightening.
I've never yet experienced a Tornado.
So pleased that your family were all ok.

All the best Jan
Liz A. said…
Scary stuff. So cool that you took the pictures. I bet there are those that study those things that would appreciate those pictures.
Darla M Sands said…
Amazing photos! And don't feel bad for the wishful hope. It may not be so wrong, if unpredictable. Tall buildings create different weather patterns such as the miniature zones against certain walls of my brick home. In fact, the city east of our community just over a major highway tends to get less severe weather, while areas north of my childhood home were actually known for being within the 'snow belt' affected by various Great Lake factors. Glad I'm out of that zone. ~grin~ Be well!
Betsy said…
I get really scared when I hear of tornado warnings. I can't imagine this type of devastation in my neighborhood and where my family lives. Good pictures you have and the one with the roof and dormer flush with the ground gives me pause as to the power and force these things have.
Darla M Sands said…
Amazing photos. We live about an hour or so from Xenia, which took a bit hit in the seventies, I believe it was. For the last few years we've been lucky and not needed to shelter in the basement but even better is the fact our neighborhood has never been hit. Weirdly, we suffered storm damage from Hurricane Ike. Power out for a week, roof damaged. It was an 'interesting' time. Be well, my dear!
Sally said…
Those have always been so frightening to me, and we've been blessed so far. Those and fire. Just give me the chills thinking about it, and how many many people have died during such.

So glad you all were spared, Pam.

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