232 People Still Unaccounted For In Joplin, Mo In Wake of Sunday’s Tornado (Updated With Story of Heroism)

A friend helps his father with the post-tornado clean up.

“Welcome to our neighborhood.

The Kansas City Star reports:

More than 230 people remain unaccounted for four days after the deadliest single tornado in more than six decades tore through the middle of Joplin, Missouri officials said today. Officials released a list of names, and Andrea Spillars, deputy director and general counsel for the Missouri Department of Public Safety, urged any survivors on the list to check in.


The death toll rose Wednesday to 125 people, not all of them identified, and officials have estimated more than 900 were injured.

Some families have complained about not being allowed into the morgue to try to identify missing relatives. Asked about that today, Don Bloom, the deputy commander for family assistance for the mortuary team, said “the process has to take it’s time. We have to be 100 percent accurate.”

Search-and-rescue teams have made multiple sweeps through the destruction, using dozens of dogs and listening devices in hopes of picking up the faint sound of anyone still alive beneath the collapsed homes and businesses. No new survivors have been pulled from the rubble since Tuesday.

Among those still missing is 16-year-old Lantz Hare. He was driving with a friend who said the two tried to take cover in the parking lot of a grocery store. The tornado shattered the windows and crumpled the car, and Lantz’s father, Mike Hare, found his son’s backpack in the wreckage.

Mike Hare has called hospitals from Dallas to Kansas City and taken dozens of calls offering advice, prayers and hopeful tips. None of the calls came from Lantz or offered any hope he might still be alive. But Hare said he’ll keep searching until he finds his son.

“We know he’s hurt somewhere,” Hare said Wednesday, his voice breaking. “We just can’t sit and keep calling. You’ve got to be moving.”

A slideshow of the tornado damage can be seen, here.

The Salvation Army has already begun relief work in the town through mobile feeding kitchens and recovery missions. The organization has set up special numbers to donate funds.

Cell phone users may text “JOPLIN” to 80888 to make a $10 donation. Credit card donations can be made by calling 1-800-SAL-ARMY or by going to www.salvationarmyusa.org. Checks may be mailed to The Salvation Army, 3637 Broadway, Kansas City, MO 64111. Be sure to note “Joplin Tornado” on the check.
Relief efforts can also be tracked through a Facebook page titled “”Joplin, MO Tornado Recovery.”

In addition to accepting donations, HS Healing and Wellness Center is looking for additional volunteers to drive supplies down to Joplin. If you want to volunteer, call Gerrettie at 815-741-4386.


Heavy sigh...

Westboro Cult Publishes Flyer: “Thank God for 125 Dead in Joplin” – Plan to Protest Funerals


A story of the heroic actions of Pizza Hut Manager, Christopher Lucas via NBC Action News:

“You knew the storm was serious. You could not even see a funnel, it was a mile wide,” exclaimed Fluhart. “All you saw was a wall.”Fluhart says his manager tried to get everyone into a walk in freezer, but according to Fluhart, people were being “ripped” out of the freezer into the tornado.

That’s when Fluhart said Lucas took heroic action. The restaurant manager wrapped a bungee cable holding the freezer door shut around his arm, trying to keep it shut. Fluhart tried to aid his boss.

“As soon as I saw the door slipped, I grabbed him,” said Fluhart. “I grabbed him, and I holding on with one hand to the cable, but he was holding it mostly.”

“And then, when everything blew away, he was gone, the door was gone, everything…”

Christopher Lucas was a father of two.

Video at link.


Debbie Wasserman Schultz Is On A Roll

Earlier this week, the DNC Chair embarrassed herself and her party when she tried to make Republicans pledge (in front of Benjamin Netanyahu) not to use Israel as a campaign issue. Yes, that story came on the heels of Republican, Jane Corwin’s loss in NY 26,  partially, a result of the Dems’ shameless demagoguery of Paul Ryan’s budget plan.

If  epic liberal hypocrisy such as that doesn’t make your head explode, how about some epic liberal projection:

(Briefing Room) — 

Democratic National Committee (DNC) Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz attacked the GOP presidential contenders on their own terms Thursday.

The Florida representative questioned just how dedicated they were to “American exceptionalism.”

“Mitt Romney, Tim Pawlenty, Jon Huntsman … I’m concerned about their commitment to American exceptionalism,” Wasserman Schultz said at a breakfast for reporters sponsored by the Christian Science Monitor.


Right.  Everybody knows that American exceptionalism is a concept that the leader of her party failed to grasp when asked about it early on in his presidency. Everyone knows that it’s a concept that  resonates most with conservatives.

The Washington Post’s Karen Tumulty noted in this clip that she wasn’t sure how much the issue would matter to voters in the next general election.

Wasserman-Schultz apparently thinks American exceptionalism  matters plenty to voters. That’s why she’s trying to co-opt it as some kind of a Dem strongpoint.


More Wasserman brilliance on display as she lambastes Republicans for wanting to defund Planned Parenthoods that perform abortions:

DNC Chief Wasserman Shultz: Republicans Are “Anti-Woman”…

(US News) — In an emotional assault on the Republicans, new Democratic Party Chairwoman Rep. Debbie Wasserman Shultz today called the GOP agenda “anti-women” and “a war on women” that will backfire on Republicans in the 2012 election and provide a cushion for President Obama’s re-election bid.

“It’s just so hard for me to grasp how they could be so anti-women as they are,” she said at a breakfast roundtable with reporters.

Yeah, it’s just so hard to grasp why anyone would want to defund PP abortion clinics, especially since according to the latest Gallup Poll,  a majority of Americans Want All or Most Abortions Illegal.

Another swing and miss.

Strike three:

Andrew Malcolm: DNC chairwoman supports U.S. auto industry so much she owns a Japanese car:

The new chairwoman of the Democratic National Committee was criticizing Republicans who opposed President Obama’s bailout of the American automakers union, oh, no, make that American automakers.

“If it were up to the candidates for president on the Republican side,” said Rep. Debbie Wasserman Schultz of Florida, “we would be driving foreign cars. They would have let the auto industry in America go down the tubes.”

So Michael O’Brien of The Hill newspaper went and checked what kind of automobile loyal-American-car-supporter Debbie Wasserman Schultz owns.

Yup, you guessed it — Japanese.

Investigative journalism at its finest. Kudos to Mr. O’Brian.

By any chance, will he be on Obama’s 2012 campaign beat?


See Moe Lane at Red State:Good News / Bad News for Debbie Wasserman Schultz!

The bad news: she didn’t realize that she was calling members of her own party ‘anti-woman’ before she started screaming to The Weekly Standard’s John McCormack about how people who voted to defund Planned Parenthood are anti-woman!

TWS: But there were eleven [correction: ten] Democrats who voted against funding for Planned Parenthood, so are those eleven Democrats anti-woman?

WASSERMAN SCHULTZ: No, they’re not, because if you, when I declare someone, when I make a broad statement like that, I look at the balance of somebody’s–where their priorities are, the balance of their record. And so one individual isolated vote here and there does not make you anti-woman.

TWS: So what are the broader votes that make those Democrats who voted on those same issues–on Planned Parenthood on H.R. 3–what makes them not anti-woman?

WASSERMAN SCHULTZ: I don’t think there are any Democrats.

TWS: Eleven.

Dang, and I thought Michael Steel was gaffe-prone.

Hat tip: Weasel Zippers.

Linked by Michelle Malkin in Buzzworthy, thanks.


Video: Joplin Tornado Victims Hunker Down In Gas Station Storage Fridge As Building Falls Apart Around Them

You may have seen this already. It has almost 3 million views on YouTube, and has probably gotten extensive play on cable news. I had heard about the story, but not seen the video. I just saw it for the first time over at Gateway Pundit.

It starts with a group of customers and one or two  employees huddling in the back of the Fastrip store, and moving quickly to the storage fridge when the windows get sucked out. That fridge saved them.

The action doesn’t start until about 2:13 in, but watch from the beginning to get the full range of emotions — from casual concern “I can’t find my cell phone” to outright *on their knees praying to God to save them* mortal terror. You’ll hear horrified cries of “GOD? GOD?” , children screaming and crying, one girl yelling, “I can’t see my mother!”, a woman’s voice praying to Jesus, a male voice saying, “we’re good…we’re good…”

Then the full force of the F-5 tornado hits the store.

More praying to Jesus….A male voice saying he loves everyone…


There were some prayer warriors in that group…Thank God they all survived.

Gateway Pundit has the video of what’s left of the Fastrip store. Pretty much the storage fridge.