The Norman Transcript

Local news

August 21, 2013

Plaza Towers families pledge support to school shelter nonprofit

MOORE — Families of Plaza Towers victims came together Tuesday on the three-month anniversary of the devastating tornado that took the lives of their children.

The families were at First Baptist Church in Moore in support of Shelter Oklahoma Schools, a private organization set up by state Reps. Mark McBride and Jon Echols.

“We’re here today to announce that these families have pledged their support. But not just their support — their work, their spirit, their heart,” Echols said. “They’ve actually done the work to help this organization.”

Echols said after he and McBride were on the scene at Briarwood and Plaza Towers elementary schools the night the tornado hit, seeing the loss of life and the problems at hand made them want to set up Shelter Oklahoma Schools.

The nonprofit organization collects donations with the goal of getting more storm shelters in Oklahoma schools. Its focus is to make schools safer for students when severe weather hits.

Antonia Candelaria, 9, was one of the children killed by the May 20 tornado. Her mother, Brandie Candelaria, said her other daughter, Trinity, who was in fourth grade at the time, also was at the school when the storm hit.

After everything Trinity has been through, seeing all of her friends go through this, getting pulled out of the rubble and not having her sister come home made Brandie want to support Shelter Oklahoma Schools.

“We dropped two little girls off that day and only one came home,” she said. “(A school) is a place where they’re supposed to be safe and feel safe.”

Candelaria said they are also trying to keep other families from experiencing the same loss.

With Trinity going into fifth grade, having a 7-month-old child with another child on the way, Brandie wants to know her kids will be safe.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Local news
  • Bad year won’t dampen peachy tradition

    PORTER — A rusting, silver-colored water tower tells visitors to this rural town between Muskogee and Tulsa that they’ve come to the “Peach Capitol of Oklahoma.” Residents of Stratford, the state’s other self-proclaimed peach capital, ...

    July 26, 2014

  • Union Market opens this fall on campus

    Shelves are being stocked as employees buzz around like busy bees and activities are in the last stages of prep as the University of Oklahoma anticipates the opening of its new eatery Union Market, located in the Oklahoma Memorial Union in ...

    July 26, 2014

  • OU football recruit under investigation in assault case

    An attorney representing Joe Mixon confirmed Friday evening that the highly-recruited Oklahoma running back is being investigated by Norman Police in connection with an incident in which a woman suffered multiple facial fractures early ...

    July 26, 2014

  • Campus Cornerassault

    Norman Police responded to an alleged aggravated assault at the Campus Corner Pickelmans Gourmet Cafe early Friday morning....

    July 26, 2014

  • OU physicist receives $1M grant

    A University of Oklahoma physicist has received a $1 million grant from the W.M. Keck Foundation to develop a quantum enhanced plasmonic sensor. The emerging field of physics known as quantum plasmonics will enable technology for sensing ...

    July 26, 2014

  • OU awarded Mellon Grant

    The University of Oklahoma has been awarded a $572,000 grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation for the development of a digital library of Latin texts of all eras. The Digital Latin Library — a Linked Open Data resource — represents a ...

    July 26, 2014

  • Veterans’ breakfast set

    Veterans are invited to a free breakfast from 6 to 11 a.m. Tuesday as Tiffany’s Restaurant, 101 S. Main St., hosts the second annual David Bolser Veteran’s Appreciation Breakfast....

    July 26, 2014

  • Junior Police Graduation First Junior Police Academy graduates

    The room went dark and a slideshow flipped through photos of children participating in the first Junior Police Academy as kids chattered excitedly, remembering what they had done over the past two weeks. Norman Police Department hosted ...

    July 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • Officials say transparency lacking in Wal-Mart zoning

    Norman city staff recently admitted to withholding information from the public regarding a controversial zoning change in southeast Norman. If approved by the city council, the proposal will allow a Wal-Mart supercenter at Cedar Lane and ...

    July 25, 2014

  • Nonprofit raises $3.9M-plus for new center

    The Center for Children and Families, a United Way of Norman partner agency, announced Thursday that it exceeded its public fundraising goal of $3.5 million and raised more than $3.9 million to complete the purchase and renovation of a ...

    July 25, 2014