When Hurricane Winds Hit The Midwest, Does Anyone Notice?

Huge T-Storm Hit Our Community This Week, And We Need Your Help

On August 10, 2020, around 1 p.m., a derecho tore through the Midwest. With hurricane force winds of 100+ mph, the storm lingered for up to 45 minutes in some places, upturning buildings, structures, trees, and powerlines. And devastating our entire community. And no one noticed.

What Made This Storm So Devastating?

Bow Echo On Radar
Bow Echo On Radar

Hurricanes come with warnings, gluing the nation to the news. A derecho sneaks in like a standard Midwest summer storm, unleashing deadly power, while barely blipping the radar for the rest of the nation.

And for our hometown of Cedar Rapids, it’s been devastating. Imagine tornado-like damage strewn across a whole city, county, and region. That’s what we are dealing with today. It’s not just a line of damage. Every home has been impacted; every neighborhood is suffering, to some degree.

Now We Are Picking Up The Pieces—Without Much Help

Cedar Rapids Ice Arena - 2020 Storm Damage
Cedar Rapids Ice Arena – 2020 Storm Damage

Days later, hundreds of thousands are without power. And, we have no specific end date in sight. No power means food is spoiling—in homes, in restaurants, everywhere.

Cell towers down and other infrastructure damage means no internet or cell phone coverage for days.

And we have to remove trees from roofs and other places they don’t belong. Restaurants, public facilities, schools, and stores can’t open, due to the lack of power and the extensive damage. We have too many people without access to food and other basic necessities. Nevermind we, like the rest of the world, have been dealing with the effects of the COVID pandemic.

Countless people across our entire area, and neighboring states, are hungry, tired, displaced from their homes, and in need.

And yet, we have no access to FEMA and other organizations because a federal disaster declaration has not been given. We lack resources that normally arrive with this level of damage.

In This Together, As Always

Cedar Rapids - 2020 Storm Damage
Cedar Rapids – 2020 Storm Damage, trees down everywhere.

We have banded together as people do in times like these, in the Flood of 2008, Flood of 2016, etc. I’ve seen us rebuild. It’s what we do. We are thankful for our neighbors who make up this amazing community. It’s what we love most about Cedar Rapids—and Iowa.

We are strong, but while we look to the future, we are hurting here today. And we need to start treating the deep wounds that will become our long-term scars as well.

Here is my plea for our region, which is suffering, unseen:

1. A presidential federal disaster declaration

While our governor was able to secure a state disaster declaration for 20 counties, we need a federal disaster declaration to open the paths for resources, such as FEMA and to draw national attention that our region deserves.

2. Media Attention

We aren’t getting the kind of 24 hour news attention that we’re accustomed to seeing with disasters of this proportion. Now is not the time to ask, “Why?” It’s just time to act.

We know there’s a lot of news to cover and maybe we are tired of so much bad news in 2020. This is a story worth covering. It’s an historic storm, whose damage not only impacts our people but national agriculture and other resources as well. Up to 43% of Iowa’s corn crops, in 10 million acres, were damaged.

We may be a fly-over region, but our stories are worth touching down for.

3. National Support

Many humanitarian, local, and faith organizations have shown up to start helping. They need support from larger organizations, media, and people with giving hearts who can aid in their work. In short, we need people to pay attention to what’s happening here.

What Is Next — Hope & Rebuild

I believe we will come through this as a community, stronger than ever. But today, we need some help, so tomorrow we can be our best. Who can you tell our story to?

  • Your congressperson to help us with that federal disaster declaration, to receive life-saving aid?
  • Media outlets and reporters, who can share our story with their readers and viewers?
  • Charitable and humanitarian organizations who can provide resources to those responding to the immediate needs?
  • Those who would support our local businesses and encourage others to do so as well?

McNary Marketing & Design Can Help

While McNary Marketing & Design has been effected, we have been able to get online and being to continue our work PLUS we do have staff in other states, so we can support immediate needs for your business directly: website updates, critical business tech concerns, or otherwise. Contact us at needed.

***Local or national clients can rest assured we are here to help.***

If you are here in Cedar Rapids or are impacted by this disaster, let us know if the McNary Marketing & Design team can be of help to you, your organization, and the community at large as we get through this current disaster. We were already working to #beatthepandemic, and now we’ll also #beatthestorm — together.

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