On a lawn chair under an umbrella amongst the rubble that once was her home sits Liza Minter. A sprite feisty eighty-two year old that captures you with her bright eyes and engaging smile. Liza is a survivor. Liza survived the Louisville, Mississippi tornado that destroyed her house, all her neighborhood and the local church. Yet she is full of joy and exuberance. She is excited to be alive and you can hear it in her voice as she speaks of her ordeal on Monday when the tornado struck her neighborhood.
As Liza sits, shaded from the heat of the sun, she describes to Red Cross volunteer, Carol Beam, those frightening moments just before, during and after the tornado destroyed her tiny home. Liza said, ”As soon as I knew the tornado was coming I ran to the bathroom and jumped into the bathtub. My foot was hanging out and just as I pulled it in, the whole roof of the house fell on top of me.” Frightened, Liza said, “I told God to let me live I wasn’t ready to go yet.”
It took Liza’s cousin, Bonnie Edwards, five hours to find her buried under the debris that had fallen over the bathtub trapping Liza. Bonnie pulled Liza through the bathroom window to safety. Later when Liza wanted to re-enter the remains of her home to collect belongings she prepared to climb back through the window only to see the door to the house was missing and they could have escaped through the door instead of the window. They both laugh about it now; however at the time neither one noticed the missing door.
Liza sits under her umbrella directing the collection of her belongings by family members and scolding them when they aren’t careful with the handling of them. Like the small plant that somehow survived the tornado. Like I said, “Liza is a survivor and I guess, so is her plant.
Liza’s cousin, Bonnie is a Red Cross volunteer in her community. She understands the importance of the Red Cross being there when people are in need. She said the Red Cross has been around to check up on everyone and bring meals to those cleaning up after the tornado.