Heart Health

Hope Amid the Rubble

May 24, 2011
CHI Health


Hope Amid the Rubble

ALL of the images coming out of Joplin, Mo., are upsetting – lives lost, loved ones hurt or missing, homes destroyed – but the devastation at St. John’s Regional Medical Center, specifically, hits a little too close to home for many of us at Alegent Health. As our local readers may remember, Bergan Mercy Medical Center took a direct hit from a massive tornado that roared down 72nd Street in Omaha in 1975.
This Omaha World-Herald photo shows the moment of impact – Bergan Mercy sits right under the massive funnel

Pam Gaines, our cardiovascular and pulmonary community development coordinator, was a teenage nursing assistant – and fairly new to the hospital – the day the storm hit. She recounts that terrifying day in this KETV story.
Click to view the video
Click the image to watch the KETV story

Now, 36 years later, we share our stories of survival and recovery in an effort to offer hope to our peers in Joplin. Just as the 1975 tornado was not nearly strong enough to destroy Bergan Mercy’s culture or to rattle our faith – we pray that the overwhelming chaos of this week’s storm will fade swiftly as compassion, support and healing sustain the people and culture at St. John’s. Bergan Mercy rose again and we fully believe that so, too, will St. John’s.

One Comment
  1. Richard Hulett

    I was at the hospital when the tornado struck..the hospital sent me a book of the devastating images was wondering if I could get that book as mine was destroyed in a fire

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