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Anne Leonard

That's the Leonard Spirit

A family reunion in Wayne. Roy and Nancy in the middle.

A family reunion in Wayne. Roy and Nancy in the middle.

I didn’t want to comment on Wayne, Nebraska, making the national news unless I had something interesting to add. Today, that “something” fell in my lap. While the news of the tornado was still trickling in last Friday night, my big concern was Uncle Roy who lives on the east side of town. Before I went to bed I was able to confirm he and his house got through the storm unscathed. What I didn’t hear was that his daughter, Cousin Nancy, couldn’t reach him during the storm. So as soon as the all-clear was called, she went to check on him. The reason he didn’t answer the phone? He was outside watching the storm. It devastated property just two blocks from where he stood. Well, that’s the Leonard spirit. It’s the reason I wrote this:

People living on the plains are fascinated by big storms, if for no other reason than they break up the monotony of rural life. My family is no exception, and some of the most intriguing details of our history revolve around storms: the blizzard that was so bad great-grandpa had to chill on the porch for a few days after he passed; the tornado that chased Ruth and Roy up the road to our storm cellar before it jumped the Logan and leveled Uncle Bob’s farm; the flood that took out the bridge over that deeply dredged creek, cutting the family farm in half.

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