In 2012, a year after a devastating tornado hit the town of Joplin, Missouri, leaving 161 people dead and leveling Joplin High School and St. John's Hospital, President Obama addressed the graduating seniors: "There are a lot of stories here in Joplin of unthinkable courage and resilience. . . . [People in Joplin] learned that we have the power to grow from these experiences. We can define our lives not by what happens to us, but by how we respond.1" There are indeed countless stories from Joplin of neighbors helping neighbors, of volunteers arriving by the busloads to lend their hands in rebuilding, and of thousands of trees being planted by community volunteers in an effort to restore and improve the city's tree canopy.
Svendsen, Erika S.; Baine, Gillian; Northridge, Mary E.; Campbell, Lindsay K.; Metcalf, Sara S. 2014. Recognizing resilience. American Journal of Public Health. 104(4): 581-583.