We need your input about tornado memorial
HOW SHOULD WE REMEMBER THE TORNADO?
JANE CAGE, CART CHAIRMAN
When I look back at the hundreds and hundreds of suggestions made by Joplin citizens after the tornado, there is one item that received overwhelming support – a memorial to victims of the tornado. Early on, this was a difficult subject to address because of the raw emotion associated with the event. Sixteen months after the storm, it seems to me that it is time to ask the question to all of you about what you believe is an appropriate memorial. How should we remember our fellow citizens? There are remembrances that pay homage to victims in many parts of town – at Home Depot, at the 15th Street Walmart, and at the Pizza Hut on Rangeline just to name a few. Cunningham Park has the bronze plaque, the fountain and 161 trees. The cross from St. Mary’s still stands along 26th Street but St. John’s has disappeared from view. Many ideas are possible but none will be as important as what we hear from you. This is not the kind of decision that consultants or outsiders can make. It’s Joplin that should decide because to us — it’s personal. We’re remembering our friends and co-workers, our parents and our children, our spouses and brothers and sisters. Knowing where to draw the balance may be tough. We’ll have to decide what is not enough and also what is too much. We’ll need to figure out the line between living in the past and facing the future. And as a practical matter, we’ll have to find a way to pay for what we decide is the right thing. The CART’s job is to listen and to be your advocates. We will need to find the right folks to step to the plate and take on one of the most emotional and sensitive parts of our recovery. Just last week, I read a Joplin Globe story about the difficulties that New Yorkers are having bringing their own 9-11 memorial project to closure. I’m thinking that with the attitude of cooperation and can-do that I’ve seen around Joplin it shouldn’t take us quite that long. We’ve had one public meeting but continue to need your input. Please take the survey or enter into the discussion section of the website to give us your views. Yours in the spirit of recovery, Jane Cage CART Chairman