Recovery tough after Mississippi tornado hits

 Monday, March 27, 2023 


A massive tornado obliterated the modest one-story home that Kimberly Berry shared with her two daughters in the Mississippi Delta flatlands, leaving only a foundation and some random belongings – a toppled refrigerator, a dresser and matching nightstand, a bag of Christmas decorations and some clothing.

During the storm, Friday, Berry and her 12 – year old daughter huddled and prayed at a nearby church that was barely damaged, while her 25 – year – old daughter survived in the hard-hit town of Rolling Fork, some 15 miles ( 24 kilometers) away.

Berry shook her head as she looked at the remains of their material possessions. She said she’s grateful and her children are still alive.

Berry, 46, who works as a supervisor at a catfish growing and processing operation stated that he could get all this back and that he was not going to get depressed about it.

Like many people in this economically struggling area, she faces an uncertain future. Mississippi is one of the poorest states in the U.S., and the majority – Black Delta has long been one of the poorest parts of Mississippi – a place where many people work paycheck to paycheck in jobs tied to agriculture.

Two of the countries walloped by the tornado, Sharkey and Humphreys, are among the most sparsely populated in the state, with only a few thousand residents in communities scattered across wide expanses of cotton, corn, and soybean fields.

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