Ice storm and all

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By Allison Shepherd

Growing up in a small town in western Kentucky and having a birthday in January always had its challenges. It seemed like we had a lot more snow back then – way back then. I should have known as being the “New Year’s baby”, being the “first baby born in Sturgis KY”, on January 11, I should have been ready for anything.

Having a birthday in January, meant you might not be able to have that party you had planned because of weather. Even my sister was born in January, when I was ten years old. We celebrated a lot of birthdays on the same day for that exact reason. So when I was young and fed up with the January birthday curse, I made a bold statement, ‘if I ever have a kid, they won’t be born in January’. Well I have two children, and both were born in January. Imagine that.

Our son Dustin was born on a beautiful snow packed and ice covered roads day on January 25, 1993. His Papa, Nana, and Aunt ‘Chel, my sister drove on ice covered roads in the middle of the night from western Kentucky to be here when he made his arrival.

Sixteen years later, on January 21, 2009, his sister Kristen was born, and is been called our ice storm baby, even though the day she was born was beautiful and full of sunshine.

Kristen was born by c-section on a Wednesday, a week earlier than planned. We came home on Saturday, and then on that eventful Tuesday evening, the ice storm of 2009 began. Dustin was at a friend’s house for the evening, since school had already been cancelled, and little did we know we wouldn’t be able to see him for 4 days, even though he was only a few miles up the road.

The night that would end up being a devastating ice storm, began with me just wanting to sit downstairs on the comfortable furniture, not knowing that that would be our home for the following 8 days. I wasn’t supposed to climb stairs, but I convinced my husband I could go down them just not back up them and I really just wanted to watch TV and relax. Since that was the only TV in the house, he agreed, and so we packed up the necessities for baby Kristen and this old mama, made our way downstairs and the cable went out. So we turn on a VHS movie, and that’s when we started hearing the tree limbs begin to fall. Then the electricity went out. Obviously, a 44 year old momma with a new born, still recovering from surgery, I was just thrilled to go on to bed in the downstairs bedroom and call it a night. Well what a night it was. Crashing sounds, noises amplified by the medication I was on, to a huge bright flash in the back yard that would later be found to be our power line for the neighborhood that had snapped and was burning a 6 foot circle in our yard. Trees continued to fall; the damage was indescribable, all while our newborn slept through the entire night without a care in the world.

The next 8 days, we survived with no electricity, no phone service and no water for the first 24 hours. After the 4th day, we were able to get out and I was so appreciative of a hot meal and a hot shower.

January birthdays, well they are the best, and some of the most memorable ones I know. I don’t have pictures from those ice storm days, as it was all about keeping warm and taking care of a new born. So, what we want to know is do you have pictures or a good story to tell about the ice storm of 2009? Because we want to know your story.

Send your pictures and stories to news@laruecountyherald.com or drop them off at our offices at 40 Shawnee Drive in Hodgenville before 4:30 p.m. Friday, January 25, and we will include them in next week’s LaRue County Herald News.

Happy Birthday to my sister, our son, and our daughter. January truly is a birthday month of many blessings.