Coming down 17th Street in East Nashville the morning of March 3rd, I couldn’t even get to our Nashville office without going through backyards. Large trees and wires crisscrossed our normal path. Once I laid eyes on the office structure and saw it was intact, I began to realize how lucky we had been. The tornado came within one block of us in the middle of the night. Our biggest problems were minor roof damage, no electricity, and no internet.
Turning back to Holly St. just north of us, there were some that lost everything. In our immediate area, homes were missing roofs, trees that stood for decades were ripped up and everything looked chaotic. It finally started to hit me, this was a very sad day for our street, our neighborhood, our city, and state.
As I started hearing reports from other areas affected, it was really starting to sink in. Our flight school had lost its helicopters and office. Our clients were calling us to document the damage. My brother was calling to see if my mother was ok in Mt. Juliet. (she was, as was her church and church family). Friend’s businesses along Woodland Ave were devastated. This reached across class, race, status, income, everything. It felt like 2010 all over again when we spent days helping neighbors clean up from the flood.
It’s only now, 2 weeks later, and a million years, that I have finally taken a deep breath and said another in a long list of prayers. This time that we can make it through our next crisis which is a worldwide pandemic. Which we will. Time and again, we struggle through, we become heroes and heroines when we were not asked and we are all equal in the struggle. My love for this city is strong, #NashvilleStrong, and our prayers and work gloves are always at the ready.
Wendy Whittemore – President, Aerial Innovations Southeast.
Please consider contributing to these local causes that will directly help and impact our community: Hands-on Nashville, Rebuilding Together Nashville, Gideon’s Army, and Nashville Tree Conservation Corp.