The University Of Alabama Hero Who Sacrificed Himself During The Tuscaloosa Tornadoes

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On Monday, a large wave of tornadoes touched down across the southeastern United States. These tornadoes were spawned from a storm slowly moving across the nation and are responsible for the deaths of several people across the south. Three years and one day after an EF-4 tornado left the town of Tuscaloosa, another series of tornadoes passed through the area, leaving a trail of debris in their wake.

John Servati was a native of Tupelo, Miss., and a swimmer on the University of Alabama’s swim team. Just after his hometown of Tupelo was struck by at least one tornado, several more touched down near Tuscaloosa. While attempting to ride out the storms in a house with his girlfriend, a large retaining wall collapsed on top of him and his girlfriend. Servati was able to hold up the fallen wall long enough for his girlfriend to escape before it once again collapsed on top of him. Eventually, rescuers arrived and brought him to the hospital where he succumbed to his injuries.

Fellow swim team member Anna Rae Gwarjanski expressed her admiration for Servati through Twitter.


The Alabama swim coach issued a statement on his passing, describing him as an “extraordinary young man of great character.”

From CBS Sports:

John Servati was an extraordinary young man of great character and warmth who had a tremendously giving spirit. During this incredibly difficult time our thoughts and prayers go out to his family and to all who had the good fortune to know him. He will forever be in our hearts and a part of the Crimson Tide legacy.

Servati, a junior, was a three-time member of the SEC All-Academic Honor Roll and was honored for his academic success as recently as last week.

While the words “selfless” and “hero” are used all too often to describe unworthy recipients, they are an understatement when used to describe Servati.

Rest in peace, buddy.

[via CBS Sports]

Image via RollTide.com

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