March 2012 - R&W Completes Historic Restoration of Tornado Ravaged Church

R&W Completes Historic Restoration of Tornado Ravaged Church

Any time that a natural disaster occurs, there are stories. When the tornadoes ripped through Alabama in April of 2011, they left a wake of death and destruction. The story with Cullman First United Medthodist Church is a story with a happy ending. The tornado that ravaged Cullman, Alabama occurred on April 27, 2011. Rogers & Willard, Inc. was informed of the project around May 15, 2011.  Rogers & Willard mobilized on site June 3, 2012 and began to help the stabilization contractor demobilize.  Though the Sanctuary was badly damaged, the restoration process restored the building to a condition that exceeded its pre-storm condition.  Many members of the church had never seen their Sanctuary in such excellent condition with a high level of finishes, and likely never would have if it had not been for the opportunity that presented itself due to the storm damage. This was a very special project for Rogers & Willard, Inc.  Any time that you deal with natural disasters there are many feelings associated with the rebuilding process.  There is the feeling of loss but also of renewal.  Many of the church members suffered from personal loss as well as the trauma and suffering that comes along with natural disasters.  The restoration of the church to its previous grandeur served as a sense of accomplishment for all of those involved.  In a sense, the restoration provided healing for not only the church members but also for the community in general.  The teamwork and cooperation exhibited by all those involved in the project was incredible.  The importance of this teamwork cannot be overstated.  Starting with the owner through the final clean-up crew, everyone involved took ownership in the project.  From the architect and engineers to the general contractor, building committee, parishioners, subcontractors and suppliers, a true spirit of teamwork and cooperation was exhibited from start to finish. Rogers & Willard Superintendent Jason McCormAck summed it up best: “I do not think a project like this one could have been undertaken without an emotional commitment from us as well as the church.” It is rewarding in many ways to have been involved in this project.  On Easter Sunday April 8, 2012 Senior Pastor Mitchell Williams stood at the podium for the first time in nearly a year.  He spoke to a congregation many of whom were seeing the renovated church for the first time.  Hearing and watching everyone’s appreciation was inspiring.  To see this wonderful old historic church look as good as the day it was built and know it will see baptisms, weddings and funerals for generations to come is a reward in itself.