Today, Congresswoman Terri A. Sewell (AL-07) released the following statement in observance of the one-year anniversary of the tornadoes on April 27, 2011 that ravished Alabama and claimed the lives of 253 people, including 76 deaths in the 7th Congressional District:
"One year ago, we witnessed some of the strongest and most devastating tornadoes in our nation's history. As we reflect on April 27th, we are reminded of the strength, the generosity and the hope of the human spirit that was displayed in the face of such an unimaginable tragedy. Today, we stand together as a stronger, more united and better prepared community committed to recovering, rebuilding and advancing our state. Since last year, remarkable progress has been made and I am confident that even greater progress is to come.
The strength and resilience of the families across Alabama provide a shining example of what is truly possible when communities work together. I commend the coordinated efforts of the local, state and federal level and honor the first responders who courageously answered the call to duty. We pay tribute to and honor those who have lost so much by rebuilding our community stronger and better than before."
Rep. Sewell assisted the state in securing more than $245 million in federal disaster assistance from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), $33.9 million of which was awarded to the 7th Congressional District of Alabama; more than $55.5 million from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD); more than $18.5 million in assistance from the Federal Highway Administration (FHA); and $600,000 in assistance from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) to the City of Tuscaloosa.