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June 6, 2013

Student writes song for victims

OKLAHOMA CITY — Rebekah Willoughby, self-taught musician and ninth-grader at Chickasha High School, will donate all proceeds from the sale of her song, Oklahoma Strong, to benefit victims of the May 20 tornado in Moore.

The song, which started as a self-recorded YouTube video, has been featured on national network news media and has received more than 15,000 YouTube views.

Willoughby was inspired to write the song in response to the May 20 tornado, which killed 24 people and destroyed thousands of homes. 

“My family sustained damage to our home in the May 3, 1999, tornado,” Willoughby said. “Hearing stories from my mom who grew up in Moore, I have a better understanding of the tragedy that this kind of destruction can cause.”

Proud to see the outpouring of compassion and support her friends and neighbors gave to victims, she decided to use the song to help raise funds for tornado relief efforts by donating the proceeds from purchases made from iTunes and Amazon to Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin’s OK Strong Disaster Relief Fund.

The fund was established in coordination with the United Way of Central Oklahoma to assist with long-term needs of victims of the recent tornadoes in Moore and Shawnee. For more information on the fund, visit okstrong.ok.gov.

To watch the original video recording, visit youtube.com/watch?v=rD_GzSZhJJc.

Willoughby’s song can be purchased here through iTunes or Amazon.

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