An Account of a Derecho
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 by Frank Shortt
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On Saturday, 8/15/2020 I called my good friend and brother, Ray Pacheco, in Iowa when I read of a devastating wind in his area. This storm was called a Derecho, a phenomenon, characterized by a line of intense, widespread, and fast-moving windstorms and, sometimes thunderstorms, that moves across a great distance and is characterized by damaging winds.

The winds, rain, lightning, and thunder devastated a whole swath of Iowa, with the center being in Cedar Rapids where there was widespread damage to houses, farms, with general havoc. Following is the email I received from Ray:

“Thank you for your article, (It was) very, very, good, and thank you for your call it was a comfort to me, you can call any time brother. About the storm, we went to the store the day of that storm about 35 miles east of us and on the way back to the west was a black wall in front of us we had to go through to get home! It started to rain, lightning, with wind blowing our little car all over the place! I never ran into a storm with that much power, about 70 mile-an-hour winds hitting us from the north! We went 20 miles through it, and by the Lords grace, got home! Our town had broken trees all over (but) our house was fine, just small stuff all over. The same storm, moving east, started a twister and tore up Cedar Rapids! (We are) thanking the Lord for his help!”

Cedar Rapids, by the help of state and federal funds will be able to rebuild and possibly have a better living standard than what they had before. FEMA is probably already on the job there!

This account reminds us of how quickly an emergency may arise. The Covid-19 pandemic, for instance, caught America unawares! We had no idea that the virus was already raging at its source in China. How could we to know that there were already tourists, businessmen, etc. from Wuhan in our country who were infected with the virus? I am not privy to all the logistics of how this thing got started in America, but I am aware that it is real, and that it is a killer. It has been reported that strains of the Covid-19 virus began to appear in Hubei Provence as early as 2012. Since it was a new thing in China, local scientists downplayed it to being just another flu strain. It seems that the present strain was introduced by miners who came down to Wuhan to do their trading and other business. This too has become a Derecho with widespread and fast-moving winds, thunderstorms from our government, and has moved across great distances to infect our nation!

We should be so blessed as to be able to drive 20 miles through the pandemic storm and arrive safely home on the other side. I am afraid that we have already been driving much farther than 20 miles, the havoc has been outstanding, with no relief in sight as far as stopping this devastating enemy! All the infighting of our politicians has not brought about a solution! They have only widened the gap of being able to find a solution.

Dr. Anthony Fauci has issued warning after warning to the American people about wearing masks in public, washing our hands frequently, and staying away from crowds as much as is physically possible. What can people be thinking who scoff at that advice? Are we back in the Dark Ages?

Ray Pacheco and his wife were very blessed to be able to make it through the great storm that struck Iowa recently. How many of us will be able to say the same after a calm is reached at the end of this pandemic storm?