The Norman Transcript

News Features

June 6, 2013

Shelters give tornado victims a sense of peace and normalcy

MOORE — For folks whose lives have been disrupted by chaos, a little bit of normalcy can go a long way.

Since May 19, thousands of Oklahomans have been displaced by tornadoes and, more recently, flash flooding. Numerous organizations and agencies have been assisting victims with needs including locating loved ones, government aid, medical care and daily living needs.

As of Wednesday, the Red Cross had four shelters open, including the Moore Community Center, 301 S. Howard.

At 7:50 p.m. Friday, when the Oklahoma City area was besieged by tornadoes and flash flooding, a tornado formed near NW Fifth St. in Moore and tracked p.5 miles to West Main Street, according to the National Weather Service. Its maximum width is estimated at 500 yards; its maximum EF rating was EF-0 (65-85 mph winds).

About 25 victims staying in the American Red Cross shelter at the Moore Community Center had to take cover — again, said Red Cross volunteer Charlotte Murrow Taylor. Wednesday morning, crews were beginning to repair the ceiling damage at the community center.

Taylor, from South Carolina, said victims who come to the shelter are literally picking up the pieces of their lives. Some have been looking for photographs. Many have lost their homes and lost everything. Some have lost loved ones.

“We attempt to provide a safe place for them to stay,” Taylor said.

Red Cross disaster relief focuses on immediate disaster-caused needs so families can get back on their feet and resume their lives as quickly as possible, Red Cross spokesman Ken Garcia said.

Volunteer Les Orser said victims receive safe shelter, hot meals, essential relief supplies, emotional support and health services including first aid.

Orser said the Red Cross delivers different meals every day. Breakfast is served from 7 to 10 a.m., lunch from 10:30 a.m. to 2 or 3 p.m. and dinner from 5 to 10 p.m. to accommodate individuals with various schedules.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
News Features
  • March Against Monsanto Protesters rally against agro giant Monsanto

    OKLAHOMA CITY — Rain did not deter protesters at the March Against Monsanto in Bricktown on Saturday evening. A button on one man’s shirt was typical of the attitude of many of the marchers, “I’m one of those people,” it read....

    May 25, 2014 1 Photo

  • Moore Med Cent Groundbreaking Community still grieving but looking toward future, new beginnings

    MOORE — One year after an EF-5 tornado devastated a core area of Moore that included the Moore Medical Center, the community gathered on the site of the former hospital to reflect and remember those who were lost....

    May 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • Couple mourns loss of young lives

    When the tornado hit, Dennis and Wilma Chastain were holding hands. On May 20, 2013, the couple left their home in south Oklahoma City in Green Briar Estates near Westmoore High School around 2 p.m. to make it to a 2:30 appointment near ...

    May 20, 2014

  • Interfaith group invites women to join

    Women of a variety of faiths brought prayers and dinner and shared peaceful dialogue recently at a Norman home. Malaka Elyazgi’s prayer sounded like a song tripping off her lips in her native tongue. The translation was equally poetic....

    April 28, 2014

  • DUal-state advance Tough field awaits Southmoore at dual state

    Southmoore’s history at Dual State is a short read. The totality of it is a first-round loss to eventual runner-up Muskogee by one point in last year’s tournament.

    February 14, 2014 1 Photo

  • Myths about obesity

    The obesity epidemic is among the most critical health issues facing the United States. Although it has generated a lot of attention and calls for solutions, it also has served up a super-sized portion of myths and misunderstandings....

    December 28, 2013

  • How to tame an out-of-control kid

    Edith, a retired Capitol Hill staffer from Washington, was at the end of her rope last year over the mayhem her 5-year-old great-grandson Wayne was causing at preschool. “I was on speed dial” at the school, says Edith, who is raising two ...

    December 28, 2013

  • Experts decry ‘resolution dependency’

    One of the country’s best-known fitness center chains is launching an initiative to wean people from what it calls an over-dependence on New Year’s resolutions....

    December 26, 2013

  • The 12 annoying songs of Christmas

    It’s that time of year, when Christmas songs fill shops, restaurants and your home. While anything on repeat can drive you mad, these 12 tunes are some of the most annoying....

    December 8, 2013

  • Caring for a cut Christmas tree

    Cut Christmas trees must be watered and kept hydrated to last through the holidays and to prevent them from becoming fire hazards. This includes small tabletop trees....

    December 8, 2013