Now, Joplin's hitting the headlines again as 'Extreme Makeover: Home Edition' has announced it intends to build new homes for some of the families who lost theirs in the devastation.
In what producers say is one of the largest projects ever undertaken by the reality show, 'Extreme Makeover: Home Edition' aims to build seven houses in seven days.
According to 'The Joplin Globe,' producer Jeff Cruz said "It's a lofty goal, but that's what we're going for. It can happen. It's going to happen. It has to happen."
The exact location of the new houses hasn't been determined, but Cruz said the houses will all be built on the same block, somewhere within the tornado zone. An announcement could be made as early as next week.
Producers are also trying to make the gut-wrenching choice of which families will receive the new houses. "As you can imagine," said Cruz, "it's a hard decision. It's hard to pick and choose between people who were victims of circumstance."
The families who have been chosen will be announced on the morning of Wednesday Oct. 19, the day construction is due to begin.
The construction project will be led by Sam Clifton, president of Millstone Custom Homes in Nixa, Missouri. He previously worked with 'Extreme Makeover' in 2009 when they built a new home for the Hampton family in Ash Grove.
In a statement, Clifton said "Building these seven homes in seven days will be one of the most ambitious construction projects ever attempted in our area. We are thrilled to be a part of this massive undertaking. It will be no small task, but our team is eager to help rebuild Joplin in the aftermath of the devastation we experienced in May."
Clifton said that 14 local builders have already offered to be part of the project, and he estimated that he'll also need 4,500 skilled volunteers and around 5,000 general volunteers.
People who want to volunteer or donate goods can sign up online at the show's website, and in an effort to get the whole community involved, producers will be holding a pep rally in Joplin.
'Extreme Makeover: Home Edition' Season 9 premieres Sunday Sept. 25 at 8PM ET on ABC.