Long Term Recovery

Memorial Day Tornado

The tornadoes that swept through South Madison County on Memorial Day, 2019 brought life as we knew it to a momentary standstill. Immediately, emergency management staff, and trained volunteers established command of the situation, drawing in reinforcement from public safety, human service, and infrastructure restoration teams to restore safe conditions to those in the affected areas. Planning for an event like the Memorial Day tornado had taken place already, during the “blue sky times.”

After the first responders completed the first steps of recovery, including restoring power and transportation systems, the community was tasked by emergency management experts to form a civilian Long Term Recovery Group (LTRG) to manage ongoing restoration. Below is the tornado recovery timeline to date and also with anticipated dates for future recovery.

Memorial Day Tornado Recovery Timeline


May 27 – Tornados hit Pendleton and South Madison County

May 27 – Community Organizations Active in Disaster (COAD) and Emergency Management Agency (EMA) response teams activated; more than 26 public safety agencies respond to immediate needs

May 29 – 450 volunteers deployed through Volunteer Action Center

June 2- June 8 – Volunteer chaplains trained in emotional first aid; chaplains and community volunteers design and staff “Heart and Soul” outreach during June Jamboree

June 12 – Indiana declaration of disaster (makes disaster loan and grant funding possible)

June 12 – Disaster Intake Forms distributed through Town of Pendleton and Fall Creek Regional Waste

June 25 – COAD response team deactivated

June 26 – Long Term Recovery Group (LTRG) formed; initial meeting held

July 1- August 1 – Case management initiated; 159 cases opened

July 11 – Students Serve Volunteer Fair held

July 27- Re-Envision this space: Meditation Garden community outreach

August 11 – Feeling Better Together emotional support program held at Pendleton Community Library

August 12 – Deadline for SBA Disaster Loan submission for homeowners and renters

September 1 – majority of SBA loan applications processed and either approved or denied

September 19– Grant awarded to the Friends of the Library and Friends of Falls Park for the “Lending Tree Library”

September 19 – Grant awarded to the Town of Pendleton for the “Urban Forestry Recovery Project”

September 15 – majority of Indiana Disaster Relief Fund (IDRF) packets mailed to anyone denied the SBA loan

October 1 – majority of IDRF grants in progress and unmet needs identified

October 8 – LTRG moves forward with determining manpower, materials and financial resources needed for open cases

October 11 – Nine Star and Wabash Valley Energy had an employee volunteer day and assisted with park and homeowner property cleanup

October 19 – Falls Park Community Day sponsored by Falls Park

October 24- Homeowner assistance grants approved for homes with outstanding unmet needs

December 31 – Open caseload of 13 cases from the 159 intake assessment forms submitted from residents across the community


March 12 – SBA deadline for BUSINESS loans covering working capital

Spring 2020- Group volunteer projects

May 2020- One year anniversary commemoration