“With one crisis after another, 2019 was certainly the most challenging year I have faced as your Mayor,” Dayton Mayor Nan Whaley said Wednesday during her State of the City address at the main branch of the Dayton Metro Library. Photo by Stewart Halfacre

Dayton mayor: In trying times, we can still be Dayton Stronger

EDITOR’S NOTE: Sixteen tornadoes smashed through our community on Memorial Day 2019. Since that day, the Dayton Daily News has been on the ground reporting on the devastation and the work of recovery. Now, one year later, we are digging into the obstacles that remain, how the coronavirus pandemic has affected rebuilding and how communities have been changed forever. Go here for more of this coverage.

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Today — Wednesday, May 27th — marks one year since a series of devastating tornadoes ripped through our region. The last 12 months have been incredibly challenging for our community, and on a date when we should gather to reflect on this somber anniversary, instead the pandemic forces us to stay apart.

Just because we’re not together, does not mean that we can’t observe this day and reflect on the many lives that were uprooted by this storm. We asked the Dayton Daily News to publish the Dayton Stronger rainbow that you will find in today’s newspaper — and we hope you will consider putting it in a window or somewhere else visible in your home to help us commemorate the anniversary and show the resiliency of our community.

RELATED: Pick up Wednesday’s Dayton Daily News for #DaytonStronger rainbow poster

Our rallying cry in 2019 was “Dayton Strong” – now in 2020, we must be Dayton Stronger. Rainbows remind us that there can be incredible beauty after a storm. And time and time again over the last year, we’ve seen our community respond to pain with compassion and determination.

RELATED: Hope persists amid multiple blows to community. Here’s how you can help

In times like these, it is clear that the things that bind us together are stronger than the forces that try to pull us apart. Thank you for continuing to look out for your friends and neighbors and making the Dayton region such a special place.

Onward.

DAYTON STRONG: Memorial Day tornadoes one year later - Slow road to recovery

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Nan Whaley is mayor of the city of Dayton.

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