One expression that doesn’t seem as prevalent these days as when I was young is that of, “March winds.” I can often remember my grandmother referring to the “March winds” when our windows shook, shrill gusts sung through the trees around our house and stiff breezes often smacked us in the face at our Ceylon home during my childhood.

In my memories, March weather has many wild memories including heavy wet snowstorms, ice storms, severe storms and quick drops and rises in temperatures. The most mystical storm, however, apparently occurred just two weeks before I was born, a storm that might have actually determined my birth date.

It was March 19, 1948, a day when a swath of severe weather and tornadoes cut a path that began in Texas and was relentless in its persistence as it churned and roared its way through Missouri, Illinois, where many were killed and injured just across the river in Illinois and into Indiana where it seemed to gain momentum on that fateful morning.

Some of the points of well-known impact included 100-mile an hour winds in Kokomo, Indiana and at Bunker Hill Air Force base, widespread damage as it crossed Wells and Adams counties and four deaths and many injuries as it slammed through Woodburn, Indiana.

In Adams County there was widespread damage including school buildings which, in most cases, closed for the remainder of the day.

Some time ago, Joyce and I were in a small restaurant in Landeck, a small town in Mercer County. There on the wall was a startling article about a storm that came through Landeck on March 19, 1948, causing the steep of a Catholic Church to fall on a parochial school and kill two children who were, ironically at the time, praying by a statue of Christ.

Suddenly I realized that I was looking at a newspaper article about a storm that might have impacted my birth date.

On that morning, my grandmother was in bed sick in her upstairs bedroom in our little house in Ceylon, near Geneva, Ind. My mother, who was carrying me at the time, heard the wind approaching and the crash of an upstairs window. She made an effort to go upstairs to assist my grandmother in going downstairs. In the process, mom tripped, fell and rolled over and over in a painful descent of the steps.

It was thought at the time that my birthday was near the second week in April. Instead, I was born two weeks prior to that time on April 1 (ironically). My mother always blamed that storm for her “April fool.”

That day as I read that story on the wall of the Landeck Restaurant, possibly about storm that altered my birthday, I realized how the smallest quirks of nature and life can change our direction in a most unique way.