May 22 marks the one year anniversary of a deadly EF-5 tornado that ripped through the town of Joplin, killing 161 people. The tornado damaged or destroyed about 7,500 homes and 500 other buildings, but the city is now well into a recovery mode that has spurred some segments of the local economy.

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Boys stand on an empty lot where a house once stood in Joplin, Missouri May 15, 2012. May 22 marks the one year anniversary of a deadly EF-5 tornado that ripped through the town, killing 161 people. The tornado damaged or destroyed about 7,500 homes and 500 other buildings, but the city is now well into a recovery mode that has spurred some segments of the local economy. ERIC THAYER/REUTERS

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Juanita Travis gives ice cream to her daughter Maliah Winnett during Maliah's first birthday party in Joplin. ERIC THAYER/REUTERS

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Workers construct a home in Joplin. ERIC THAYER/REUTERS

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A destroyed home is seen in front of a house that is being built in Joplin. ERIC THAYER/REUTERS

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Workers construct a home in Joplin. ERIC THAYER/REUTERS

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St. John's Regional Medical Center is seen through part of a memorial to victims of a deadly tornado in Joplin. ERIC THAYER/REUTERS

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Workers hold a roof frame for a home under construction in Joplin. ERIC THAYER/REUTERS

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A worker walks down a hill after covering it with straw in Joplin. ERIC THAYER/REUTERS

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A newly constructed home is seen for sale in Joplin. ERIC THAYER/REUTERS

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A mostly cleared neighborhood is seen in Joplin. ERIC THAYER/REUTERS

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A tornado shelter is seen at a temporary FEMA trailer park in Joplin. ERIC THAYER/REUTERS

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A ring that is part of a memorial for tornado victims is seen in Joplin. ERIC THAYER/REUTERS

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Artists Emily Frankoski and Dolores Bilke paint a tornado damaged tree in Joplin. ERIC THAYER/REUTERS

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A sign is seen on a tornado damaged tree in Joplin. ERIC THAYER/REUTERS

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Volunteers build walls for houses in Joplin. ERIC THAYER/REUTERS

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A volunteer builds walls for houses in Joplin. ERIC THAYER/REUTERS

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Volunteers cut wood floor planks for a house under construction in Joplin. ERIC THAYER/REUTERS

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A tornado damaged tree is seen painted in Joplin. ERIC THAYER/REUTERS

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Autumn Achey rides her bike through a park in Joplin. ERIC THAYER/REUTERS

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Autumn Achey rests on the grass at a park in Joplin. ERIC THAYER/REUTERS

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A woman watches a girl at a playground at a FEMA trailer park for displaced tornado victims in Joplin. ERIC THAYER/REUTERS

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Jada Irvin and Kaylee Kinsch are seen on a playground at a FEMA trailer park for displaced tornado victims in Joplin. ERIC THAYER/REUTERS

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St. Johns Regional Medical Center is seen in Joplin. ERIC THAYER/REUTERS

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Blair Irvin Jr. plays with his son Blair Irvin III and daughter Jada Irvin at a playground at a FEMA trailer park for displaced tornado victims in Joplin. ERIC THAYER/REUTERS

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Peggy Gettler looks at the empty lot where her daughter Malisa Crossley was killed, nearly a year ago by a deadly tornado, in Joplin. ERIC THAYER/REUTERS

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A memorial is seen where a house once stood in Joplin. ERIC THAYER/REUTERS

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Construction work is seen as it continues in Joplin. ERIC THAYER/REUTERS

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Empty lots are seen in Joplin. ERIC THAYER/REUTERS

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Homes under construction are seen in Joplin. ERIC THAYER/REUTERS

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Homes under construction are seen in Joplin. ERIC THAYER/REUTERS

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Homes under construction are seen in Joplin. ERIC THAYER/REUTERS

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A Walmart store, that was destroyed by a tornado and later rebuilt, is seen in Joplin. ERIC THAYER/REUTERS

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A cross is seen in Joplin. ERIC THAYER/REUTERS

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Peggy Gettler, who lost her daughter nearly a year ago to a deadly tornado, hugs a volunteer in Joplin. ERIC THAYER/REUTERS

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Workers construct a home in Joplin. ERIC THAYER/REUTERS

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The rubble of a high school is seen in Joplin. ERIC THAYER/REUTERS

May 23, 2012