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On Wednesday, Jan. 28, 2009, my husband and I awoke to a crashing sound outside our bedroom window. It was the awning we had installed last summer giving up the ghost under about four inches of snow, which was under about two inches of ice which was being covered by about three more inches of snow.
After working for an hour in the cold, snow and ice we had it shredded to the point it would not tear down the rest of the house. As we crawled back in bed, I said “at least the electric is still on.” Yup, there it went! But for only a beat and then it came back on. My husband informed me not to say that again - which I haven’t without the caveat ì”so far!”
What a storm. It was not fit for man nor beast outside; and if you did not have electricity it was not fit inside, either!
However, in the early afternoon on our road came the sound of a big vehicle. I peeked out the tightly closed front door and was amazed at the sight on Baker Williams Road: there was a Grant County scraper truck stopped just before our driveway. However, that was not all the noise, there was a person out there, with a chain saw, clearing the heavy, ice-covered tree limbs from over the road! The chainsaw-wielding man made quick work of each limb and sooner than later they had passed our house and moved on to the next mess, clearing the road of ice, snow and spreading cinders as they went.
I receive Web notifications of press releases from the Commonwealth of Kentucky. Because I was lucky enough to have electric and Internet, I watched fascinated as Gov. Breshear declared a disaster Feb. 3, thereby opening the way for relief to be brought to Kentucky. As well, by doing this, it would also pave the way for the federal government to declare Kentucky a disaster area so that we could get assistance from FEMA and bring in the National Guard.
By the second wave of the storm on Thursday and two days into possibly one of the worst storm occurrences to hit Kentucky in decades, President Obama declared two states as disaster areas: Arkansas and, yes, Kentucky. Then, on Thursday, Breshear toured several affected areas in Kentucky.
It was fascinating to me to watch these occurrences; very different from 1997 when we had another storm that literally shut down Kentucky. Power outages, ice, sub-zero weather and a closed interstate actually paralyzed the state for a week. What a difference a decade makes.
I know many people were without electricity for days and we were extremely lucky and blessed to have power. We did lose power Saturday morning from 2:30 to 6 a.m., but Owen Electric was out there working on it in no time.
I can only compliment our state and local officials and Owen Electric at their quick actions to head off the worst of the storm effects. Indeed those folks that were out doing the work need way more kudos than I could ever give them. Personally, I just want to say thank you to each and every one of the state and local employees and National Guard as well as those hardy souls that had to travel to work through the horrific cold and ice.
I pride myself on being a wordsmith, but in this instance, words simply cannot covey my gratitude and pride in the hard work and dedication of all the individuals. We are very lucky to live here in Kentucky in this day and age.
(Deborah Lucas Angel is a contributing writer for the Grant County News. She lives in Corinth.)