Obama arrives in Joplin to tour tornado-ravaged Missouri city

Thousands line the streets of Joplin one week after the devastating tornado that killed 139 people. Motorcyclists also stream into town to block protests by the controversial Kansas-based Westboro Baptist Church.
Reporting from Joplin, Mo.— Thousands of tornado survivors lined Joplin's main thoroughfares Sunday in anticipation of President Obama's tour of the storm-ravaged city, holding American flags and banners declaring the city would come back from its devastation.

Obama flew over the worst-hit area of the city, viewing it from above, before landing in Joplin just after 12:20 p.m. CDT.
This town is beat, but we're not broke," said Catherine Maples, who wore a T-shirt scrawled with the words, "A country town can survive."

Thousands of motorcyclists also streamed into town from Missouri and surrounding states, many announcing their intention to block protests planned by the Kansas-based Westboro Baptist Church, which said it would picket Obama's arrival.

Most of those lining miles of roadway between Joplin's main mall and the campus of Missouri Southern State University, where Obama was scheduled to speak after touring the 6-mile-long storm-ravaged area, were couples, families and groups of young people, many waving flags and posters of support for the city.
"We're trying to show respect and honor for the ones we lost in Joplin," said Charlie Brown, a co-organizer of the street rally, who said more than 20,000 people indicated on the group's three Facebook pages that they planned to attend.

We want people to know that despite rumors that 75% of Joplin is destroyed, that is absolutely not true. We are alive. We are well. We are going to survive."

Obama, after meeting with storm survivors, was to deliver brief remarks, with Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon, at a community memorial service at the university.
Obama was traveling to Joplin after a six-day tour of Europe to boost relations with European leaders. In this deeply conservative region of southern Missouri, most welcomed the president's show of support, but many also questioned the need for a presidential visit.

"People for the most part are saying, 'Stay home and send money,' " said Kristi Santee, a Joplin resident.

No comments:

Post a Comment

IndianEyeNews respect your feedback and responses, we consider your feedback as a reward. Thanks..