JACKSON, Miss. (WJTV) – Storm Team 12 Chief Meteorologist Ken South called this cold spell a ‘generational event.’ That means something like this only comes around once every few decades here in the deep South. Now, we have snow every few years, but the weather usually snaps right back up the next day or a couple of days a the most.
What we have right now is prolonged cold spell. We have forecasting today that can foretell these weather anomalies in advance, but one of my family stories is about one of my uncles. When he was a boy, he went to the sawmill with my grandfather one warm, winter morning. By lunchtime, the wind had shifted and by quitting time, it was snowing. On their way home, my uncle had to hold onto the side of the wagon and run all the way back to the house to keep warm.
The first cold spell I remember was when I was about 12 years old. It lasted about a week, and all of us boys in the neighborhood in north Greenville walked over to the levee everyday and slid on a pond that was frozen. That lasted until things started warming up. As we were out on the ice that last day, we heard a crack. About the time one of my friends started to warn us to run, he went through the ice. The pond was only about waist deep, so the worst he got was a quick bath on cold water.
I remember when the reservoir froze over in 1984. We also had a hundred yard sheet of ice out into the Pelahatchie Bay in 1989.
All that to say we live in a part of the country where cold spells aren’t an every-winter way of life. But they stand out so much that they become stories.