George Ballew spent Monday in an emergency shelter, nursing his wounds and worrying about his missing wife.
He was clutching a tube of toothpaste, the fingers on one hand cut, broken and wrapped in gauze, when an emergency volunteer approached. "George, your wife is OK," she told him gently. "We just found her."
"Oh, thank God," he said, collapsing into the volunteer's arms. "Thank you. Thank you."
Ballew, 48, and his wife, Deborah, 53, lived in a first-floor apartment across the street from St. John's Regional Medical Center. This city's big regional hospital was busy Sunday afternoon when it took a direct hit by the killer tornado that struck with only a few minutes' warning. At least 116 people were killed in one of the deadliest such storms in the nation's history, including six at the hospital.
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Joplin tornado: How to help
The people of Joplin need your help and prayers.