Oklahoma’s Heavy Load
This morning, I woke up to check out the latest coverage on the deadly tornado that hit Moore, Oklahoma. Reports Monday night were filtering in, but there were many gaps in what was known. This morning’s coverage showed us the scope of how the tornado ripped buildings apart.
Within minutes, there was dramatic video of the moments parents were reunited with their children. The video left me sobbing on my couch. I suspect, it moved the hearts of many other viewers as well. It is easy to imagine the anxiety those parents must’ve been feeling, not knowing if their child was alive. I only wish the outcome was the same for all the parents and loved ones of the missing in Moore, Oklahoma.
As a reporter, I covered my share of tornadoes and the destruction they left, though nothing close to this. The repercussions will be felt for decades. The people living there lost homes and businesses, but there’s more. With the destruction of some of those businesses, they lost their livelihoods too, at least, temporarily. Children lost their schools, playgrounds and everything that’s familiar. Many lost friends and relatives.
I’ve seen the Red Cross volunteers and staff in action, following devastating floods, fires and tornadoes. Theirs are the friendly, welcoming faces that offer food and a place to stay for victims. They don’t judge in any way whose suffering is worse. Their well-run outfits say to victims, “Come, rest, and let us help you with this heavy load.”
The city of Moore is no stranger to this level of destruction and loss. In 1999, on May 3rd, an EF 5 tornado struck, tracking on the ground for 30 minutes, leaving three dozen people dead. In 2003, a weaker tornado hit. But just because you’re familiar with a monster, it does not cushion the blow.
So I pick up my phone and text REDCROSS to 90999 to send in a donation. It is a small gesture, but when multiplied worldwide, it can have a huge impact. Let’s help Oklahoma with their heavy load.<a name=”comments”></a>