Today Show: Toby Keith Returns To His Hometown
Toby Keith came back to his home town of Moore, Oklahoma after the tornado struck May 20 2013 to check on his family and friends. He said it wasn’t easy flying in and seeing the destruction from the air. He went to his sister’s house to check up on her and spoke with Matt Lauer, telling him that, a mere four streets over, amidst the destruction, he had grown up. He pointed to a pile of rubble across the street and noted memories of buying baseball cards and gasoline to fill the lawnmower up with as a kid.
Today Show: Toby Keith Says The People Of Moore Will Bounce Back
Keith talked about the resilience of the people of Oklahoma. This isn’t the first time that the town has been hit by a tornado. In fact, the May 3 Tornado that hit in 1999 was even more powerful and destructive than this one, and they bounced back from that as well. Toby Keith said that, before you know it, houses will be going up again and people will be preparing for the next one. People call this place home, and they are not about to leave it on account of the weather.
Toby Keith has family friends all over down there. His mother was missed by only a mile, and his house is only about three miles outside of where the tornado cut a swath of chaos through the town. His son-in-law beat first responders to one of the elementary schools that were hit and started helping pull children and teachers out of the wreckage.
Keith wanted to tell the more financially fortunate people to start heading over to their local Salvation Army stores to donate money so that they can facilitate the recovery of the home town.
Today Show: Tom Cole Returns To Moore, Oklahoma
Another person of notoriety that came from Moore, Oklahoma was Republican Congressman Tom Cole, who actually was a groundskeeper at the Plaza Tower Elementary School, one of the two elementary schools hit during the tornado that cost seven youngsters their lives.
He says that, fortunately, his family’s street was spared, so they are doing fine. Tom Cole did say that they are struggling with no electric, but that, when you look around, it really isn’t a problem at all when you compare it to the rest of the world.
Today Show: Oklahoma Tornado Relief
When he first heard the news, he was meeting from with a colleague, Doc Hastings, in Washington, when he looked up and saw some familiar landmarks from his home town getting destroyed. He quickly made plans to come back to his town as quickly as possible.
He is not sure of the damage, but says that, before they think about the financial cost of the tornado, they have to think about the families here, first. In fact, part of his reason for casting a vote to help the victims of Hurricane Sandy back in January, something that many of his Republican colleagues did not support, is because he is from Oklahoma and understands how you can lose everything with just one storm.
Oklahoma City got a lot of help when the bombings occurred, and Tom Cole thought it was time to give back.
Today Show: Social Media Helping Relief Efforts In Moore, Oklahoma
Social media has changed the dynamic of disaster recovery. After the tornado struck Moore, Oklahoma on May 20, people took to Twitter and Facebook in search of not only family and friends, but of lost family treasures that, thanks to social media sites, has made their way back into the hands of their owners.
Volunteers have been working around the clock to return lost pets to their families. One man found a camera while participating in the rescue efforts at Moore Hospital. The camera had photos taken that very day on it of a happy couple holding a baby boy born that day. He posted the pictures on Facebook, hoping to find the parents who owned the camera. The pictures were shared all over Facebook, and the couple will be getting their camera back, along with all of the photos of the birth of their baby boy, later today.