Lawrence County looks back on April 27, 2011 with story of progress, resilience

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LAWRENCE COUNTY, Ala. (WHNT) – Aline Norwood is one of many residents with a compelling and emotional recollection of April 27, 2011.

“When it hit, it picked the house us and when it come down, it started coming apart all around us,” she said. “When we crawled out, it was like a third-world country. There was debris everywhere and it was like ‘how are we alive?'”

God’s grace, she said, kept her family safe.

For those leading the county, the memories are just as fresh.

“[The Moulton Fire Chief] said ‘we need some help.’ I said ‘what’s the address?’ I’ll never forget it, he said ‘there are no addresses,'” recollected County Commission Chairman Bobby Burch.

Fourteen deaths, and over 100 homes destroyed.

But still, resilience.

The Old Mays Grocery in Langtown was leveled, and the new store in its place is a sign of survival and progress.

“They’re rebuilding a part we’ve always known that was very important for this community,” said commissioner Joey Hargrove.

The people, they say, helped put their county back together.

At the time of the April 27, 2011 storms, Lawrence County had only one public shelter, in Moulton. Five years later, they have around a dozen strategically placed around the county to better serve the community should another storm hit the area.

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