The skies darkened over Great Bend and the surrounding area Thursday night. The rain came along with hail ushered in by winds that blew up to 80-plus miles per hour.
The city fell into darkness. Homes were not illuminated and streetlights and stop lights ceased working.
And, still, the rain, hail and wind came.
Residents lost electricity and water service. Even cell phone coverage was spotty.
But, motorists came to intersections where the lights were no functioning and, as they are taught, treated it as a four-way stop and took turns. They didn’t panic, they just knew what to do and were gracious about it.
And, school officials faced with damage to their learning centers, took swift action to alert the public.
Barton County Communications Department, Barton County Sheriff’s Office, the Great Bend Fire Department and the Great Bend Police Department spent the night taking and handling storm-related calls and reports.
Last, but not least, were the power company crews that were up through most of the night as they struggled to turn on the lights.
We awoke to a community Friday morning littered with leaves stripped from their trees, shattered limbs and building damage. But, the skies were blue and the temperatures were cool. It was a beautiful morning.
We should all take a breathe and be grateful.