For many Alabamians, many different emotions come with the anniversary of the April 27 storms. So, how do leaders take this into consideration when determining how cities will mark the milestone each year?
The City of Tuscaloosa is marking three years since the tornado with a week of special events. The events are focused more on rebuilding and the future, rather than the devastation of the storm.
"There's never the perfect tone to set in a situation where you had 53 fatalities, 1,200 injured and thousands of people lose their homes," Tuscaloosa Mayor Walt Maddox said.
Maddox says in the past 36 months, there has been so much work focused on rebuilding Tuscaloosa.
"We felt like it was important to show that we have now turned the corner. And the next 24 to 48 months are really going to be exciting about rebuilding. It doesn't mean we don't honor or forget what we've been through, because I don't know how any of us could ever forget. But it does mean we're now focused on trying to make sense of this, and try to make it right."
Wednesday, April 23, Maddox will read to students at University Place Elementary and Alberta Elementary. Both of those schools were destroyed in the storm. University Place reopened in August 2013 and construction is underway on the new Alberta School of Performing Arts. Alberta Elementary students are currently housed on the campus of the Tuscaloosa Magnet School.
Thursday, April 24 at 6 p.m., the City will debut recovery videos at the Mercy Me concert at the Tuscaloosa Amphitheater and on the City's social media sites.
Saturday, April 26 at 8 a.m., there will be a storm-related exhibit in Government Plaza in conjunction with the Mayor's Cup 5K race.
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