This page contains a Flash digital edition of a book.
by chri s tucker IN SERVICE by larry bleiberg/speci a l contributor


RETIRED PIPEFITTER ROY CLIFTON was home alone when a tornado struck Tuscaloosa, Ala., last April 27. As winds of nearly 200 miles per hour howled, he raced to a closet in an interior hallway. “I just put a pillow over my head and said ‘God keep me safe.’” Crouching in the dark, he heard debris smash into the house, and then the roof blew off. “I could feel the pressure change in my ears.”


With their community at its most vulnerable, Scouts and Scouters from across Alabama, such as Troop 100 from Northport (below), descended on Tuscaloosa to clean up debris, collect donations, and help displaced residents gather belongings. Cub Scouts and Webelos (opposite) did their part, too.


When record-breaking tornadoes descended on Alabama, look who responded.


When he emerged, he found his home


of 50 years destroyed, as was the entire neighborhood. Debris and downed power lines blocked roads, making it impos- sible to drive. He waited for hours until his grandson, Second Class Scout Parker Smith, and Parker’s father made it through surrounding fields to rescue him. Indeed, Scouts and Scouters appeared


everywhere in the days following the disaster, which killed at least 238 Alabamians and displaced thousands, including hundreds of Scouts and adults from the 12-county Black Warrior Council, based in Tuscaloosa. The morning after the milewide EF-4


twister blasted through town, council Scout executive Dewayne Stephens began reaching out to his units. Phone calls rarely worked, but text messages often got through. “We said, ’Help yourself, help your neighbors, and help your family. And when you get through, we want you to go out into the community.’” Stephens also called Tuscaloosa’s


mayor to offer help, and the council’s headquarters became the city’s first emergency donation site. Cub Scouts worked three days straight unloading donations for thousands of their newly homeless neighbors. “I was very proud of them,” says Vince Smallwood, a leader


8


S COUTING ¿ SEPTEMBER•OCTOBER 2011


LARRY BLEIBERG (2)


Page 1  |  Page 2  |  Page 3  |  Page 4  |  Page 5  |  Page 6  |  Page 7  |  Page 8  |  Page 9  |  Page 10  |  Page 11  |  Page 12  |  Page 13  |  Page 14  |  Page 15  |  Page 16  |  Page 17  |  Page 18  |  Page 19  |  Page 20  |  Page 21  |  Page 22  |  Page 23  |  Page 24  |  Page 25  |  Page 26  |  Page 27  |  Page 28  |  Page 29  |  Page 30  |  Page 31  |  Page 32  |  Page 33  |  Page 34  |  Page 35  |  Page 36  |  Page 37  |  Page 38  |  Page 39  |  Page 40  |  Page 41  |  Page 42  |  Page 43  |  Page 44  |  Page 45  |  Page 46  |  Page 47  |  Page 48  |  Page 49  |  Page 50  |  Page 51  |  Page 52  |  Page 53  |  Page 54  |  Page 55  |  Page 56  |  Page 57  |  Page 58  |  Page 59  |  Page 60  |  Page 61  |  Page 62  |  Page 63  |  Page 64  |  Page 65  |  Page 66  |  Page 67  |  Page 68