I've lived in Oklahoma my entire life. I remember the May 3rd, 1999 tornadoes. I was in high school at the time and so just sat by and watched that day and over the next few weeks as news, images, and video came in from the destruction. This is the first time for me, being a member of the Oklahoma media, that I've been part of something so devistating.
I was going to write something all flowery and thoughtful and deep and interesting, but you know what? I can't. The words just aren't coming. Bottom line, this sucks. And I don't mean my writers block. No, I mean this whole tornado situation. Being an Okie, I love seeing tornadoes and I think they're fascinating until something like today happens. I was out riding my bike and all of a sudden was caught in a hail storm that just...appeared. I had to take refuge at my vet's office in Mustang (I just happened to be right by it when the hail started) and the pic above is me after I finally made it back home. That same storm became the tornado that has devistated Moore.
This is my first time as a member of the Oklahoma media that I've been involved in such a major weather event and to be honest, I feel kind of helpless. I'm not a storm chaser, I'm not a TV reporter...I'm just a guy that plays music on the radio. All I can do is sit here like everyone else and watch the news roll in and pray for all those involved and that no more lives will be lost. I think this is the fastest I've ever seen a tornado crop up and be so destructive so quickly. Thank God for all the lives that were spared and hopefully we'll hear more uplifting stories over the coming days out of this horrible tragedy.
Though I cannot go to the area and help with recovery efforts (as no one should unless it's your job or help is asked for by authorities), here is a list of places you can donate or contact if you yourself needs help:
Finding loved ones in Moore: www.safeandwell.org
OU Emergency Shelter - 405-325-2511
Emergency animal shelter for displaced animals: Ann's Country Club for Pets - 4200 E. Britton Rd. - (405) 478-2303 or (405) 615-9609
Donations: www.recross.org/okc or text REDCROSS to 90999 to give $10 to American Red Cross Disaster Relief
Mustang Brewing Company's corporate headquarters located at 520 North Meridian Avenue, Oklahoma City, OK 73107 will be accepting donations of water, non-perishable food, baby supplies, clothing and other household goods starting tomorrow, May 21st at 7 AM. All items will be palletized and distributed to Shelters as the trailers are filled.
Donations are also being accepted at all three Edmond high schools.
Red Cross shelter info:
We currently have 4 shelters open at the following locations:
These shelters will remain open throughout tonight.
Red Cross Emergency Response Vehicles have begun delivering hot meals throughout the affected areas. We are also operating fixed feeding sites at the Little Axe Resource Center, the Carney Oklahoma Senior Center and in Shawnee at the Shawnee Expo Center located at 1700 W. Independence, Shawnee, OK 74804.
Additionally, Red Cross Disaster Assessment Teams are working throughout the affected areas to assess the extent of the damage.
Those affected by this event who need assistance are urged to contact our OKC office at (405) 228-9500.
You can also submit needs to email@example.com
Other: If you find family photos please pick them up. After May 3rd there was a big collection of photos at the library where people could go to see if they could find any of theirs. It is a small thing, but means a lot to someone that has nothing left.
Also be on the lookout for displaced pets! They are family too. Be careful though when you approach them, they may be scared or injured.
I'll update more as the info comes in!
Asbury Medical Supply located at 3401 N May Ave in OKC will be accepting donations of all kinds between the hours of 8:30 and 5:00 starting tomorrow! Please email firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions or shoot a text to 4058880136! Get involved friends!
The Salvation Army will have a truck at KFOR-TV taking donations starting 10 a.m. Tuesday.
444 E. Britton Rd.
Oklahoma City, OK 73114
- Bottled water
- Baby formula
- Hand towels
- Individually wrapped snacks
- Work gloves
NO CLOTHES PLEASE
Donate: Text “storm” to 80888 to make a $10 donation.
Lost animals: If you find displaced animals, you can take them to the Animal Resource Center at 7949 S. I-35 Service Rd. (405) 604-2892. They are also offering displaced people shelter for the night as well.
Other facilities open to tornado victims:
University of Oklahoma – student housing (Norman)
Oklahoma Baptist University – student housing (Shawnee)
Graceway Baptist Church, located at 1100 S.W. 104th in Oklahoma City.
Oakcrest Church of Christ at 1111 S.W. 89th Street in Moore.
Victory Church, located 4300 North MacArthur in Oklahoma City.
Journey Church in Norman I-35 and Tecumseh Road is open as a shelter.
Fifth Street Missionary Baptist Church, located at 801 N.E. 5th St. Oklahoma City.
St. Andrews Church, located at S.W. 119th and May.
Trinity Church of the Nazarene is open as an emergency shelter. It is located at 7301 S. Walker, just on the north side of I-240.