The News Courier in Athens, Alabama

March 6, 2012

News Courier publishing book to commemorate anniversary of April 27 tornado outbreak

The News Courier

— Everyone in Limestone County was impacted in some way by the events of April 27, 2011. Those who lived in the paths of any of the seven tornadoes to strike that day had their lives turned upside down.

Four residents died. In the more than 700 homes hit, as many as 2,300 people were displaced. Three churches were destroyed and eight public facilities were struck. About 90 businesses were damaged, including 57 farms, causing many to close temporarily and some forever.

The News Courier staff catalogued the days after the storm in photos and words. Publisher Ann Laurence felt it was important to record this historic event and its impact on Limestone County. A decision was made to go through the thousands of photos we had taken and publish a selection to commemorate the year anniversary of the tragic events of April 27.

The result is “Day of Terror: 7 on 4.27,” a 120-page hardcover keepsake book containing more than 200 full-color photos that depict the county’s tragedy, the selflessness of its residents and its recovery.

It is available for pre-sale for $34.95 by clicking the ad at the top of the homepage at Be sure to order soon. Once books ship, the purchase price will increase. The books are set to arrive around April 20.

Because recovery and rebuilding continue these many months later, The News Courier plans to donate a portion of proceeds from the sale of this book to tornado relief.

“Day of Terror: 7 on 4.27” is meant to illustrate the resilience of members of the community and to thank the hundreds of people who unselfishly came to our aid when our county lay in tatters.

It also is a memorial to those from Limestone County who were among the 247 killed statewide that day — Janice and Glen Riddle, Jan McElyea and Shannon Sampson. They are missed.

Despite our tragic losses, the story depicted within its covers is not one of despair, but one of courage, determination and hope.