PETAL, Miss. - Nearly one year ago an EF-3 tornado swept through Petal, ripping apart buildings, street poles and homes. Today, Petal Mayor Hal Marx stated the city is close to full restoration.
“I’ve been very proud of the people of Petal coming together to rebuild and recover. We went through the same thing four years ago and now a year ago with this one. So, unfortunately it something we are getting used to. We don’t want it to happen again but, I think we’ve bounced back pretty well from the one a year ago,” said Mayor Marx.
Officials want to install more tornado sirens throughout the city.
“For right now we’ve talked about possibly having a safe room for some of our employees, our first responders. Maybe having safe rooms added at the fire station just in case something happens,”
Marx said the city did not rebuild on it’s own. A number of organizations helped the people of Petal find their way back to where they are today.
“State agencies, MEMA, of course Forrest County Emergency Management has been very helpful to us. A lot of charities, Samaritan’s Purse came in. We’ve had group such as Mennonites come and help rebuild houses," Marx shared that a number of local and regional churches also helped Petal rebuild.
"We’ve had firefighters from the coast who came up to help our firefighters who had homes damaged. So just a wide variety of groups, private and public that has come in to help us. We appreciate that help very much. We tend to always remember that and if someone needs us to help you want to repay them for that,”
The people of Petal are describe as resilient, strong and neighborly for always helping another person in need.
“It’s a great honor to be mayor of a city with people who have been tested like this, through floods and tornadoes, and hurricanes, and yet they keep bouncing back and coming back better than ever,” Marx stated proudly.