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No greater love

“Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends.”  John 15:13
This verse from the gospel of John has been preached many times since Christ spoke the words over 2000 years ago.  Last Wednesday April 27, many folks in the state of Alabama either lost their lives, were severely injured while trying to save others or were willing to act as a shield and put themselves in harm’s way. This selfless act made it possible for a loved one, friend or even a stranger to be saved or protected from the deadly tornadoes.
The incredible stories of bravery have been told over and over by local news stations, printed in newspapers, spoken of by radio host, or passed along on Facebook.  The actions taken by those using their own bodies to protect another would be the ultimate sacrifice for many.   The cases where lives were lost are the accounts that we will hear about most often and will cause us to stop and pause, thinking about the sacrifice made. There were also many cases where a person willingly protected another and thankfully both survived.
Grandparents threw themselves over a grandchild. A mother was found still holding to her child refusing to let the winds take her child. A Morgan County Sheriff’s Deputy even went door-to-door in Hulaco warning residents about the coming tornado.
These are just a few of the heroic stories that have been shared since last week.
Others willing to sacrifice their safety include those who went into action after the storms had passed to search for survivors.  Many of the people who survived the storm could have lost their lives if not for the willingness of many to seek out the injured and those who were even buried under the rubble, left from the storm’s path.
This not only includes professionals such as firemen, policemen, and rescue workers, but also those who jumped right in to help those in need with no regard for their own safety.
Wednesday April 27, 2011, will be a day that will not be forgotten in the minds of many in our state and even our nation.  Many lives were lost and many others changed forever on this date.
Please continue to pray for all that were affected by the tornadoes and lend a helping hand to those who have lost so much.
Randy Garrison is the general manager of the Hartselle Enquirer.