Reuniting Arlington tornado victims with missing photos

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by SHELLY SLATER

Bio | Email | Follow: @wfaashelly

WFAA

Posted on April 4, 2012 at 10:19 PM

Updated Tuesday, Nov 26 at 3:49 AM

ARLINGTON — "Ah here's a picture," said Kathryn Fitz.

This is a hunt for family history, but not for Fitz's loved ones.

She's trying to find total strangers whose photographs were blown away in Tuesday's tornado swarm.

"I know what it’s like to not have somebody around," Fitz said. "Pictures are all you have, and you kind of cherish those moments no matter."

Fitz's dad died of a brain tumor five years ago. She only has three photos to hold on to, to remember the good times.

"It helps me remember I had him for a long time. I helps keep me strong. He's with me through pictures," she said.

So to see photographs of a mother holding her baby in the 1950s...

...brothers playing in the front yard...

...or a family celebration...

Fitz knows the images she found scattered near Lee Drive and Green Oaks Boulevard in Arlington could represent someone else's most cherished moment.

"That's someone's grandparents," she said, examining the photos. "It's maybe a birthday, a celebration. It looks really important, all the family is gathered around... that one really affected me."

The pictures feel like sandpaper; the tornado ripped off the gloss, and in some cases many pieces.

But Fitz is collecting those, too, hoping someone else may have the other piece of the photographic puzzle.

"Even if it's taped back together, it's still a good memory," she said. "I don't want to know the full story; I just want to help people remember the full story."

Fitz is doing this to honor her father's parting thought: "Do better things."

She has been in contact with the nearby Green Oaks Nursing Home nearby, which was heavily damaged by the funnel cloud.

We have all the pictures online for you to see:

If you recognize someone, contact Shelly Slater on her Facebook page.

E-mail sslater@wfaa.com

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