So, last week I posted a blog with my five best writing pieces from the entire semester. Well, I actually had to post the five best for my Media Writing class. I kept one of them and then added four more.
My coverage of speaker Elizabeth Kolbert and her talk about global warming. Very very liberal.
My coverage of speaker Golan Levin and his digital art that was really awesome.
My coverage of an Elon town hall meeting. Interesting look at local government.
My feature story on iPads. Interviewed some cool people for this (I’m looking at you, Michael Soucy).
You may have seen this one before because this is the one I held over.
Check ’em out, tell me what you think if you wish. As you wish…hmmm….
A story in Sunday’s The Sanford Herald by former Elon grad Alexa Milan was headlined: “Religion’s role in the cleanup.” The major headline in that issue was “Faith.”
No matter what religion or creed one ascribes to, there is no denying the affect that faith has had in the recovery efforts following April 16th’s North Carolina tornadoes.
I have seen this recovery first hand. This past Easter weekend, I traveled back to my home in Sanford. My house is fine. My family is fine. But I know people whose homes are broken and whose families are shaken.
R.V. Hight, a Sanford icon and longtime co-worker of my father’s at The Sanford Herald, was at home with his wife Bunnie and daughter Holly when the tornado blew through. He huddled in a walk-in closet over his wife and daughter while the storm passed. His home was left in shambles, with debris spread all over the yard, trees completely gone and insulation and wood from the house blown into Holly’s green Volkswagon Beetle.
He praises God for their safety and asks for more prayer over his family’s situation.
I was helping Poplar Springs Baptist Church on Sunday night with my mother when we came across a woman who had lost her home. When we asked about how the family had fared, she told my mother and me the story of her young daughter who looked to be about seven years old. The girl had been sucked out through a window, where she grasped onto the empty frame, holding on for dear life. The girl later told her mother that she saw a bright light and a man in white securing her to the window frame with his hands.
The woman said she hadn’t really placed much faith in God and angels before, but sure does now.
I’ve always been a man of faith in God. I’m working at a camp this summer where I get to be a counselor to middle and high schoolers who want to grow in their faith.
I praise God for His hand over my family and our house during the storms. I visited St. Andrews Church Road, which caught the blunt of the tornado’s damage along with the Lowe’s Hardware store that has been the center of attention, on Saturday. My heart ached for those whose homes were affected. I saw the remains, well, lack of remains of a house that had completely been blown away. All that was left after a week of cleanup was a small pile of bricks. But my faith has gotten me through. I know that God has a plan for everyone affected, and that His plan is something I shouldn’t mess with, something I shouldn’t worry about.
This past week The Herald has provided a constant stream of accounts of miracles and outpourings of love from helpful groups. Most of those groups are Christian-based: Matt 6, Neighbors Helping Neighbors, Poplar Springs. If you check the Facebook Pages of these groups, you will see the needs of these groups being met almost instantly by people who love God and want to help.
It’s what Christians are supposed to do in times like these. That’s what faith can do.
These are my five best pieces from this year. I had to put them on a blog for Media Writing, and I put them on my Media Writing blog that I’ve never used. These are the links to those posts. Enjoy!
- This was for my Media Writing class. We had to write a personality profile and I chose Tripp Tracy, the television color commentator for the Carolina Hurricanes NHL hockey team. I love my experience writing this story. I got to go to the RBC Center, sat in the seats and interviewed Tracy, then got to go down to the locker room and talk to a few players and the Hurricanes coach. Read the story to find out more.
- This was the first post I did on hockey for The Pendulum‘s sports blog. It looked at Dan Ellis and his sad departure from Twitter.
- This was a story I wrote about the Elon University club hockey team for the Winter Term edition of The Pendulum. Other than the Tripp Tracy piece, it was my favorite to write because I got to do a lot of research and e-mailed back and forth with the guy who helped organize it.
- This was the first game I really got to go to and cover specifically for The Pendulum. It was cool because I got to sit on media row right on the court. It was pretty awesome to say the least.
- This is my first of hopefully many Opinions pieces I will write for The Pendulum. It looks at Top 40 songs and how ridiculously bad they are.
Check out my thoughts on Josh Wilson’s “I Refuse” on my other blog!
I was in the vicinity of three tornadoes during the dozen or so years I lived there, but never saw one. We were living in a single-wide mobile home, but thankfully away from town, the afternoon one struck. One side of our home was peeled away. My baseball cards and my favorite book on baseball star Roberto Clemente were soaked, but all in all damage was minimal.
An inveterate storm-watcher and lover of weather-themed documentaries, I always thought I’d love to see a tornado in person. But in North Carolina?
Now Lee County will have a sad remembrance of our worst storm, of our tornado, and the vivid pictures of its destruction are enough. I don’t want to see one.
I was fortunate enough to not be in Sanford at the time of the storm. My family was fortunate enough to not have sustained any damage to our home or ourselves. But others were not as lucky.
The Herald reports two deaths. People are still missing. This is just mind-blowing.
Major network news stations are in Sanford currently, setting up in front of what’s left of the Lowe’s Hardware Store on Horner Boulevard.
What used to be a place where people got things to prepare for storms like this is now gone. It’s not a major Sanford landmark by any stretch of the imagination. But it’s gone. Fortunately, around 45 employees and 60 customers inside the store were moved to the back in a safe room before the tornado came through. I can’t imagine coming out of that back room and to that above.
I wasn’t even in Sanford. But I wish I could be right now. School is preventing me from being where I should be, helping others recoup their losses and examine where to go from here.
I’m working this summer at Snowbird Wilderness Outfitters, a Christian camp where counselors minister to middle school and high school students. I love God, I’m not ashamed to say it. This weekend, I was strongly encouraged in my faith and was refreshed to take on the rest of this semester.
I want to go back to Sanford and help people, tell them about God’s love and His provision and His sovereignty. One song we sang has a lyric that goes “and You make all things work together for my good.”
That’s my belief for Sanford. There are some strong Christian churches in Sanford, strong Christian leaders. Look no further than Bruce MacInnes of Turner’s Chapel or Rudy Holland of Grace Christian Church. My dad, Bill Horner III, the publisher of The Sanford Herald. Bill Hicks, who runs the Bread of Life food pantry.
God has a hand in everything. That’s the truth. Whether or not you believe is up to you.
He’s what’s getting me through not only my first year in college, not only my personal struggles, but the tragedy that struck in Sanford.
You make all things work together for my good.