October 3, 2011
In this July 20, 2011 photo, emergency room physician David Hagedorn examines Shirley Ellsworth at a tent hospital housing St. Johns Regional Medical Center in Joplin, Mo. On May 22, 2011, one of America's worst tornadoes in half a century took dead aim at St. John's. The building would crumble around its staff and patients, but their hospital would continue.
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One of America's worst tornadoes in half a century took dead aim at St. John's Regional Medical Center, barreling through halls, gnawing at walls, ripping open ceilings. The building groaned in agony. Its ghostly, nine-story shell looked like the remnants of a nuclear blast. But this was not the end.