Coming Together: Using Social Media for Good

On November 4th, 2017, college student Emilie Walter was at her family’s home in Portland, Indiana with her boyfriend Brandon Dailey. They were wrapping Christmas presents when Emilie took a break to let her dogs out to use the bathroom. She noticed low dark clouds in the sky and called Brandon to look. Immediately, Brandon recognized it as a tornado and they rushed to find shelter. They drove as far from the storm as they could, but eventually winds grew too strong so they followed the lead of a car in front of them and pulled over to hide in a ditch.

When they returned home, there was not much of a home left. Emilie described it as though a bomb had gone off where her house once was. 3 of the 4 dogs left behind were fine, with no harm done to them, but the fourth dog, Jeb, a 220 pound English Mastiff was nowhere to be found. They searched the area but could not find him. So Emilie turned to Facebook where she wrote a post pleading for help in case anyone saw her four legged family member.

Within a mere day, the post was shared more than 12,000 times and this alone amazed the Walter family. Jeb made it home shortly after, with just some minor cuts and bruises. But the Walter family remains in awe of how willing the community and complete strangers on social media were to come together and help even among their own hardships.

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