Frigid temperatures contributed to four deaths in the
Midwest on Sunday, Dec. 3, as 350,000 customers remained without power in Missouri and Illinois.
The same heavy snows that knocked down power lines also made
travel treacherous. On Friday, Dec. 1, packed snow and ice on Interstate 70 west
of Columbia, MO, led to a 15-mile traffic jam in the eastbound lanes that
didn't clear up for most of the day.
John Roberts, an OOIDA member from Statesboro, GA, called into "Land Line Now" on XM Satellite Radio while he was stuck in the traffic
jam. He said he witnessed a young Marine Corps staff sergeant who was checking
on the welfare of people in their cars and trucks and passing out food and
"There's a guy out here . that should get every rose Land
Line has ever published," Roberts said. "He's out here walking up and down
between these trucks, handing out MREs and water to people who need it."
That Marine - 25-year-old Jared Losh of Poplar Bluff, MO - said he was returning to his recruiting office in Columbia when he got stuck in the
traffic jam. Luckily, he'd loaded his 16-passenger van with lots of Meals Ready
to Eat and bottled water just in case he got stuck in the snow with a load of
"I was thinking in my mind, going back to my boot camp
training, that some of these people probably needed help," Losh said. "I saw
one of these truck drivers, and he asked me if I needed any help. I knew they
had the CBs on there . That really helped out a lot."
So the truckers did their part, locating people in need and
notifying Losh. And the young Marine did his part - and then some.
- By Reed Black, staff writer