Dozens of family photos recovered after December 2021 tornado

Newscast recording
Published: Dec. 7, 2022 at 5:04 PM CST
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

DAWSON SPRINGS, Ky. (WFIE) - As many around the Tri-State prepare to mark one year since the Dec. 10 tornado, memories of that night are still fresh for the people of Dawson Springs.

Many people lost homes, loved ones and neighbors in the storm — including Lori Blalock.

Her home was destroyed, but not everything inside was a total loss.

“We had 46 photos returned to us,” Blalock said.

She says she doesn’t have Facebook, but her family members used a page on the website to track down some of the photos that were blown away in the storm.

Dozens more photos were found scattered with the debris of what was once her home.

As she looked over the recovered photos, Blalock remembered getting mail in the weeks following the tornado.

Inside were letters and prayers, paired with her photos, thought to be lost forever.

“From these cards came a lot of kindness,” Blalock said. “People were just really kind, and you could tell they were reaching out because they didn’t know what else to do.”

Blalock says her family pictures were found as far away as Cincinnati, over 250 miles from Dawson Springs.

Another picture was returned to her from the tarmac at Louisville’s airport.

One Whitesville man sent back a photo he found in his yard, with a special gift.

“He sent us a dish towel, and a photo of me and my niece making cookies,” Blalock said. “He sent us a dish towel that said ‘cookie team’ and a gift card to Kohls.”

Blalock says she had seven large totes filled with old pictures. She now has just a small table’s worth of photos, but says receiving each one was like reliving a memory.

“I’m so thankful for these,” she said. “These are vacation and family members we no longer have. This is important to me. This allows us to hold onto a positive part of our history.”