Saturday, May 23, 2015

Nixon: We will continue to help Joplin

(From Gov. Jay Nixon)

Four years ago today, an EF-5 tornado struck Joplin, claiming 161 precious lives and destroying or damaging 8,000 homes and businesses. It was a devastating storm, but what defines Joplin today is not destruction, but resilience and renewal.

In the weeks and months that followed, we marshaled resources from nearly every state agency to bring services directly to tornado survivors, locate the unaccounted for, and create new recovery programs to ensure the Joplin area’s future as a vibrant and growing community.

The road back to normalcy has been long and hard. But one day at a time, this community showed its strength, pulling together to rebound from disaster. Brick-by-brick and board-by-board, businesses have reopened and homes have been rebuilt from the rubble.
Joplin - One Year Later
Looking back: One year after being struck by an EF-5 tornado, Joplin had made tremendous recovery.

Today, Joplin continues to rebuild stronger than ever. U.S. Census Bureau figures released this week show that, as home to more than 51,300 people, Joplin’s population is now larger than it was before the tornado.

We recently celebrated the opening of the new Mercy Hospital Joplin, replacing the former St. John’s Regional Medical Center, and cut the ribbon on the new state-of-the-art Joplin High School. In 2013, Jasper County became the very first Certified Work Ready Community in the nation by American College Testing (ACT).

Today, I am back in neighboring Duquesne to announce $2 million to repair roads that were damaged by heavy equipment hauling debris in the weeks and months following the tornado.

Four years ago, I made a commitment to the people of Joplin that the State of Missouri would be here every step of the way, and we continue to deliver on that promise.

Working together, we will continue to help Joplin, and all communities struck by disasters, build a stronger, more prosperous future.

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