Michael Jones Brings Help from Virginia Alumni Testimonials from Tornado Victims, Volunteers

Michael Jones (01/03) Minister, Waynesboro Church of Christ Waynesboro, Virginia

It’s been a little over five years since our family moved to Virginia from Oklahoma. When we heard about the tornado that hit Moore, it brought back many memories of the May 3, 1999, tornado. It was hard to believe that Moore had been devastated again.

Several members from our congregation put a trip together, and we hit the road. OC housed our group for free, which was a huge blessing. We spent several days helping people with cleanup and repairs.

On the day we arrived, we visited the Plaza Towers Elementary School grounds. None of us left with dry eyes. We stood staring at seven crosses, each representing a precious child that did not survive. 

We were about to leave when a young man holding a Bible approached our group. He was nine years old, and had been in the school when the tornado struck. He told us how he and his classmates had taken shelter in the hallway. This young man knew five of the seven children that lost their lives that day. At the age of nine, he has experienced more tragedy than many adults. 

He held up his Bible and asked us to sign it. I was having difficulty narrowing down everything I wanted to say to this young man. Finally I wrote, “Hold tightly to God, He has a plan for you.”

Tragedies like this never seem to make sense to us. My hope and prayer is that this young child and everyone else affected by this tragedy will hold tightly to God, and know that He has a plan for them.

Fall 2013

View more stories from the Fall 2013 issue of Vision magazine.