Floods of Water and Memories
In an instant your life can change forever. After a brief rainstorm in my hometown of Pike County, thousands of people became devastated. I wish I could only blame mother nature. On Monday afternoon, confirmation was received that some of the hardest hit devastation was caused by the overflow of a silt pond left by a mining company.
Silt ponds are used to catch the run off debris from strip mining. Also, the are often used to help beautify the grounds during mine reclamation. However, due to an old unkempt silt pond, the landscape of a beautiful area was raped and destroyed. I was gazing through hundreds of photos and thinking about all of the memories that I have attached to my Grandmother's house, my Aunt's and Uncles homes, and the fear that my cousin must have felt being trapped in a house while it is being flooded.
This devastation has changed my feelings on strip-mining, and certainly mountaintop removal. Before I was for the coal industry, and certainly without the coal industry the clean up of Pike County and the devastation felt by the thousands of people without shelter, food and water, would not receive such coverage. I hope as Americans we remember that while Haiti needs money, Kentucky, Tennessee and rural Arkansas do as well because of all of the recent devastation that has occurred there.
I am also surprised by the lack of attention from celebrities this flood is receiving. Superstars like Patty Loveless, Jean Ritchie, and my the love of Mamaw Phyllis's eye Dwight Yoakum are all from the area. Loretta Lynn, Ricky Skaggs and Larry Flynn aren't from that far away. It amazes me that even when Nashville flooded the stars didn't come out like they did for another country. Put America first, help the people that helped you.
Today, as you read this article, please take a moment and pray for those whom are victims of this awful flooding. Pray for the people who lost everything as I will be doing. Also, I am going to call you to act, many people lost everything they have. Please contact Amanda Fletcher of the American Red Cross in Eastern Kentucky, or First Baptist Church in Pikeville, Kentucky and find out what is needed most. Also information is available on the website of the East Kentucky Expo Center and the stations of East Kentucky Broadcasting. (Randy Jones you are truly missed and still loved by all whom knew you.) Those sites are www.eastkyexpo.com, and www.ekbradio.com