VIDEO Courtesy, Breezynews.com
SMITHVILLE, Miss.–It was three years ago Sunday that one of the most violent tornadoes to ever hit in Mississippi slammed into the town of Smithville in Monroe County, near the Alabama border. That twister took with it most of the town’s infrastructure, 150 houses, 14 businesses and four churches. It also took 16 lives. Though the rebuilding process has been painstaking, a vital piece of the town’s functionality was replaced Sunday, with the dedication of a brand new town hall.
“Three years, almost to the minute, we lost these great citizens in our town,” said Mayor Greg Kennedy at the ceremony Sunday at 3:44 p.m. That’s when the tornado entered Smithville and began its destruction.
Gov. Phil Bryant, Cong. Alan Nunnelee and Smithville residents attended the dedication, where new flags were presented that will fly over the building.
Construction continues to replace the homes, businesses and churches destroyed in the storm.
The tornado was rated an EF5, with winds at over 200 mph. It stayed on the ground for 37 miles and killed at total of 23 people. After touching down in Mississippi, it crossed the state line and struck an Alabama town as a EF3.