A tornado hits close to home

Natural disasters are things we see in the news. A flood in Bangladesh, earthquakes in China, wildfires in California- all reported in somber tones before the commercial break, often presented with some generic disaster clip of people sorting through rubble. These events have a defining feature: they happen to other people. Not to us, or to anyone we know.

Debby and Mike Kaspari in the box where they weathered the storm

An exception to this principle of natural disasters touched down in Oklahoma last week. The tornados that killed several people nearly took two of our own: artist/blogger Debby Kaspari of Drawing the MotMot and Oklahoma State University of Oklahoma myrmecologist Mike Kaspari survived a direct hit by crouching in a metal box in their garage floor. You can read Debby's account of the storm here. Just about everything that wasn't in the box was demolished.

If you've not seen any of Debby's wonderful natural history artwork- some of which was lost- you're in for a real treat. Here's one of my favorites:

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"Tropical Heat: Broadbilled Motmot" by Debby Kaspari

I hope Mike and Debby are able to reassemble the pieces enough to regain a sense of normality soon.

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I´m really sorry about their home. But it is good to see these couple it's ok.

By cyberlocro@hot… (not verified) on 16 May 2010 #permalink

Wow. I can't believe it.

Nature's awesome power is explified in both the most miniscule creatures and the biggest phenomena, and this is one of the things that shows that everyone, not just scientists, can appreciate it. I'm so sorry about their financial losses, but I'm so glad they'd escaped with their lives.

Yeowwww. Glad Mike and Debby escaped injury.

By Julie Stahlhut (not verified) on 17 May 2010 #permalink