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 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.