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17 Inches of Rain Devastates Middle Tennessee

A massive storm in August 2021 killed over 20 people and injured dozens more after 17 inches of rain fell around Waverly. It was a record-breaking event that sent floodwaters surging throughout the area.

The storm took out telephone lines, cell towers, and roads. Many families were left uncertain about the survival of their loved ones for days. Emergency workers were instructed to go door-to-door to get an idea of who needed help.

Most of the missing from the storm come from the neighborhoods where the floodwaters rose the fastest. The most tragic story from the event and made national news was the twin toddlers who were swept out of their father’s arms.

It Was Double the Rain of the Worst-Case Event

The hardest-hit areas of Middle Tennessee saw double the rainfall of the previous worst-case scenario for flooding. Storm lines moved overhead for hours, taking tons of moisture out of the atmosphere. It’s a scenario that many scientists warn could become more common as the temperatures increase.

Kansas Klein told NPR that two girls held onto a puppy and clinging to a wooden board while watching the rapids flow under a bridge. He didn’t know what happened to them, and the currents were too fast to attempt a rescue.

Buildings were knocked down, people were forced to find bodies in the water, and lives had to be rebuilt. Although the region is on its way to recovery, the stories from this event will continue to play tragic notes in the months and years to come.