Did you find items in your yard earlier this week that seem out of place? If those items could be tornado-related debris from Lincoln and Franklin counties, an effort is under way to collect and return those deemed irreplaceable.
Warren County resident Betty Williamson found a picture that was taken of a fourth-grade class at South Lincoln Elementary School.
“At about 9 a.m., I was out feeding the chickens and there was one piece of paper in the yard,” Williamson said of her Tuesday morning activity. “It was a picture of a fourth-grade class from 2009-10. On the top it says South Lincoln Elementary School. At the time, I had no idea what had happened.”
On Monday, the day before the picture was found, an EF-3 tornado swept through Lincoln County killing two people as it destroyed 25 structures and damaged several others. In the storm’s two-mile wide path of destruction was South Lincoln Elementary School. The front of the school was torn off, about three-quarters of the building’s roof was ripped off, and a school bus was tossed into the building.
Williamson says she wants to return the item that likely flew 100 miles.
“I was hoping I could figure out a way to get this picture back to whomever it belongs to,” said Williamson. “It’s amazing that this traveled about 100 miles and it’s in almost perfect condition. One tip of the picture is gone. I don’t know if that was missing before or was torn off by the tornado.”
A collection effort is under way at Tullahoma Events Center, located at 205 NW Atlantic Street. Items like the picture found by Williamson will be accepted this Saturday, May 3 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Anyone finding mementos are asked to save them. If they are wet, they can be placed in a home freezer overnight to prevent mold.