In the Wake of Tragedy: Flooding in Waverly, Tenn. and the Future of Loretta’s

By Will Burgess

Hurricane Mills, Tenn β€” In August the sport of motocross was celebrating its 40th Anniversary of the AMA Amateur National Motocross Championship, the premiere amateur motorsports competition in the world, at the home of country legend Loretta Lynn in Hurricane Mills, Tenn., located a mere seven miles from the small town of Waverly, Tenn.

In the same month Loretta Lynn herself was also welcomed as an American Motorcyclist Association (AMA) Hall of Fame Inductee to the Class of 2021. It was a joyous time of celebration for Lynn and the neighboring towns that play host to the thousands who descend upon the river valley towns that surround the Lynn Ranch.

But, only a few weeks after the celebration had ended and the visitors returned home, disaster struck the same towns surrounding the Tennessee River Valley, just west of Nashville.

On Sat., Aug. 21st, the small community of Waverly awakened to severe weather, which before day’s end would result in more than 17 in. of rainfall. This unprecedented event led to a tragic day for the small town, marked by severe flooding that left a path of death, injury and destruction, unwitnessed before in the history of central Tenn.
In a matter of hours, the lives of nearly every resident of the community of Waverly would be adversely impacted, with more than twenty deaths and an equal number of residents declared missing.

Last week, Racers4Waverly, a support fund created to benefit the citizens of Waverly, held an online auction with contributions from across the motorsports world of posters, faceplates and even race-worn jerseys and private race days with instruction from pro champions; some of which fetched over $6,000 in bids before the auctions ended last night.

But the fight isn’t over yet. Racers4Waverly has raised $185,000 in private donations at the time of this writing and is looking to reach a goal of $500,000.

After the families of Waverly are taken care of, the organization hopes to turn their efforts to restoring and rebuilding the portions of Lynn Ranch that were damaged in time for the Championship next August.

You can donate to the cause here:

Cover: Flooding devastates the town of Waverly, Tenn. and nearby Coal Miners Daughter Museum at Loretta Lynn Ranch (pictured), which sits on a portion of Hurricane Creek, after experiencing a record breaking increase of river water levels | credit: Loretta Lynn MX

Will Burgess is a journalist with Adrenaline Powersports Mag


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