The Dallas-Ft. Worth Home Emergency Corps

Is the airport an unlikely place to be gripped by nostalgia? Walking off a plane into DFW yesterday for the first time in more than 15 years, I was so overcome with memories of walking through terminals, parting from my grandmother after long summer visits, I could barely breathe.

Now I’m in Austin, and am busy lying around in my friends’ hammock until someone else wants it or we straggle off to see a band. Tomorrow night I’ll be at this. Monday I’m back in town and reading from the Loser anthology with Will Clarke and James P. Othmer at the Astor Place Barnes & Noble. More info here.

Today’s picture — of my grandmother — appeared in The Dallas Morning News on May 29, 1955, next to an article titled “Home Corps Takes Shape.”

She stands at the far right, grimly clutching the back end of a large fire extinguisher, and watching as imaginary flames are quenched. The opening of the story reads:

Some Dallas residents know that the tornado funnel and the mushroom cloud are not the only forms disaster takes. They have pictured the shape in which our city might find itself without proper civil defense preparation. These people don’t content themselves with sounding an alarm. . . .

Imagine that. Someone in my family bracing for the apocalypse.


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