The tornado touched down in Moore, OK on May 20. It stayed on the ground for approximately 50 minutes.
I get my daily doses of news from the radio & mobile news summary during my 1.5-hour commute, each way. When you were simply listening to a narrative of what happened, it was hard to grasp the severity of devastation in Moore at first. As my car inched along in highway traffic, I heard this apparently common practice described matter-of-factly,
They have to actually post street signs so people can recognize where the streets are.
The realization hit me so hard that I sucked in my breath.
(Photo credit: Time.com)
This is what happened after a tornado cut through a 1.3-mile wide and 17-mile long destructive track.
I have not been able to look at the images and video footage until now. I still can’t look at the photos of children being carried out from the decimated schools with piles of unrecognizable debris in the background without suffering an attack of guilt + anxiety. It’s not that we live in Tornado Alley, of course. I hear these stories of how some parents had made the judgment (and which turned out to be right) call to pick their kids up from the schools that collapsed. I was happy for them, glad to hear the good news in the midst of everything, yet a voice says, “You would not have made it in time if it happened here.”
The first funeral for one of the 24 victims was held yesterday. Her name was Antonia Candelaria. She was 9. Antonia, or Tonie as she was called, was found in the rubble with her best friend, Emily Conatzer.
If you are thinking of making a (or more) donation, in addition to Red Cross, OK Governor has established the OK Strong Disaster Relief Fund, in coordination with the United Way of Central Oklahoma, to assist with the long-term needs of victims.