10 Years of Recovery: Firefighter Remembers What Drew Him to Saving Lives
On April 27, 2011, 26-year-old Ryne Chandler wanted to see a tornado. So he got in his Jeep, picked up a friend and they drove down 15th Street, unaware it would be the last time many well-known businesses would remain standing.
Chandler and his friend came face to face with the storm and learned how fast his vehicle could go in reverse: 40 mph, if you’re curious.
They survived, but were immediately surrounded by death and destruction.
“It clicked,” he said. “The reality that there were people who were hurt and people who were injured.”
So they left his Jeep in the middle of 10th Avenue and started digging people out.
Now, Chandler works at the Hendersonville Fire Department just outside Nashville. He’s a firefighter, and saving lives is his job. It’s a passion he found during that horrific day.
“There would be absolutely no way I would’ve gotten into the fire service had the tornado not happened,” he said.
The tornado changed his life, he said, and now he works to change others’ lives through his career.