DAWSON SPRINGS, Ky. (LEX 18) — William and Sherry Baird are in the process of wondering whether they will buy or build their next home.
The house they lived in for about 33 years was destroyed in December's tornadoes. Inside was a token of their love dating back to their high school days. A small note the size of a sticky note was one of the earliest foundations of the love they share.
On the night of the storm, the tornado swept the note from the home and sent it 150 miles away to Louisville. Thanks to the kindness of fellow Kentuckians, a woman found the note and posted it on Facebook to try and find the owner.
Walking around what was left of their property, Sherry couldn't help but notice flowers she planted five years ago started to bloom in springtime.
"They are coming up!" she said.
They remind them of more peaceful times. Deep in their home before the storm was that love note from 1982 that they had just coincidentally looked at a few days prior.
"We were kind of trying to get it retirement friendly for us to spend the rest of the days here," Sherry said.
"We were in the process of waterproofing our basement, and we were cleaning up a bunch of stuff," William said.
William says he wrote several notes to her back in those days.
"You feel very vulnerable when all your things are out there in the world," Sherry said.
It is the kindness of strangers that has touched them so very deeply.
"It's just overwhelming at times to think about how much people have cared," Sherry said. "It's a miracle, and it just shows God's in control, and what can be saved from the ashes and built upon don't have to be very big."
We talked with their son, Chris, back in December.
"They're not really that lovey-dovey type people," Baird said in December. "I thought it was sweet that he [William] actually did something like that."
"Ah, about right," William acknowledged. "She's more lovey-dovey."
"Well, we've been through a lot," Sherry responded.
Sherry can't help but chuckle when she says she remembers a Hershey Kiss that came along with the note. William chuckles when he says he probably got an actual kiss out of sending the note.
William and Sherry have fond memories of this place they've called home. It's all William has ever known.
"I thought this place was the prettiest place on the face of the Earth," he said. "I think it's more memories that I had of it."
The letter and photos that have been returned from people they don't even know will hang in a frame on the walls of wherever they call home next.
"We want all the people that took the time to send them back to be included in our chapter, so that's why we thought we'd put all of them together," she said.
While they have their note back, they acknowledge it is going to take years for Dawson Springs to recover. They're thankful for all the people who have helped put the pieces back together and returned lost, precious family memories.