The sound of laughing children and sizzling burgers could be heard in Moore as one storm ravaged community came together with the help of the American Red Cross.
“It’s about giving back but also bringing everyone together and saying okay we’ll heal together,” said Stone Meadows block party co-organizer Allan Johnson.
The housing addition was in the path of the May 20th, 2013 tornado and sits just around the corner from the new Briarwood Elementary (the original was destroyed in the storm). Some of the children running around at the block party were in school at Briarwood on that day, and they and their families have been displaced for months. Now this marks first time they’ve all been together since the storms.
On hand was the Red Cross with a team of volunteers and preparedness kits. Residents waited in line to get their weather radio, smoke detector, first aid kit, flashlight and have a one-on-one dialogue about what to do next time there is an emergency. In all 150 households in the housing addition walked away with not only tools but tips to keep themselves safe.
“Oh my goodness, it means everything,” stated co-organizer Allen Johnson. “If you live in Moore you expect the alarm is going to go off every now and then but we found we were not as prepared as we needed to be. The Red Cross taking the time to actually sit down with people and ask do you have a plan and if you don’t here’s a great one to start with … that’s what it is all about.”