Wetumpka Strong Community Luncheon Held In Wetumpka

People in Wetumpka are still cleaning up months after an EF-2 tornado damaged the city.
City leaders held a luncheon today to get the community together, as they continue moving forward.

“It’s a great opportunity for the city to reach out and just try to help people feel better as we start looking toward the future,” Wetumpka Mayor Jerry Willis says.

It’s been about 4 months since parts of Wetumpka were destroyed.

Homes, churches, and businesses still sit on site and need repair.

Some of the hardest hit areas are blocked off. Willis says progress is slowly being made.

“Major heavy stuff , debris has been moved,” Willis says “We’re down to smaller stuff and we’re still finding things that we didn’t know about.”

Sunday provided a break from the on-going recovery, as residents laughed and enjoyed the entertainment.

Resident Janice Vance was among the crowd.
She lost her home in the January tornado.

“When it happened, I was like, the only thing I could think of was look at all that I’ve lost,” Vance says. “And it took me a couple of days because I was in shock that it really hit me that I was very lucky that I was alive.”

There is good news for Vance. Her home is one of the few currently going through reconstruction.

“We started rebuilding. They started about a month ago,” Vance says.

She expects to be moved in within three to four months.

While there is still a long ways to go, the city is using one slogan to help get through the storm months later. They say they are “Wetumpka Strong.”

“One day we’re put all of this behind us and it’ll strictly be about the future,” Willis says. “The joy comes in the morning. That’s what we’re taught that. And we know there’s a brighter day for us and we’re looking forward to that brighter day. Today just helps us take one step closer to get there.”

Entertainment for Sunday’s luncheon was provided by Grammy and Dove nominated comedian Tim Lovelace from Jacksboro, Tennessee.

Two bands- The Rainbow Quartet and The Upbeats- performed at the event.

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