McAlester News-Capital, McAlester, OK

Police/Courts

May 22, 2013

McAlester Salvation Army responds to needs after tornadoes strike

McALESTER — Counseling the first responders and feeding the hungry.

That’s what the McAlester Salvation Army has been doing since a monster tornado struck Moore, said Salvation Army Sergeant Rob Daniels of the Salvation Army.

The Salvation Army was among the first units at the scene when at Plaza Tower Elementary in Moore after a huge tornado left a trail death and destruction.

On Monday he said his group fed more than a 1,000 people hot dogs, hamburgers  and drinks.

But the groups main duty is to provide counseling to the first responders.

 “We provide emotional and spiritual care,” he said.

“It’s  a hard thing to take the body of 7-year-old out of the rubble.”

He said when the effort turned from a rescue to recovery the whole mood changed.

He recalled when of the most striking moments occurred about  Monday night while rescuers were frantically digging through the rubble at Plaza Tower Elementary to find survivors and were told it was now a recovery effort.

“That’s when we knew there would be no more rescues. I saw the shoulders of these men just slump, the mood drastically changed.” he said. “They kept working but it was not the same.”

He said the first responders are very dedicated and the “keep working to their own detriment.”

 “We help them debrief and make sure they eat and drink and rest.”

Daniels said his team of five men and women were deployed to Shawnee at 6 a.m. on Monday morning when a tornado struck in New Castle.

Then at 3 p.m. when the tornado struck in Moore he said his team was deployed to Plaza Tower Elementary where on Wednesday nine children were reported dead.

Daniels said he’s been counseling first responders since 1992 and he’s been to disaster scenes such plane crashes and hurricanes, but this one was one of the worst.

“I’ve seen a lot of bad scenes but this one ... it’s terrible,” Daniels said.

He said his team will be deployed to Moore until Monday and he said those wanting to help the Salvation Army can visit www.salvationarmy.com.

“What we really need is monetary donations,” Daniels said.

Contact Jeanne LeFlore at jleflore @mcalesternews.com.

For more on this story, see the print or electronic editions of the McAlester News-Capital. Click here for print edition home delivery or click here to see the Smart Edition for your computer, tablet, e-reader or smartphone.

1
Text Only | Photo Reprints
Police/Courts
Seasonal Content
AP Video
Arizona Prison Chief: Execution Wasn't Botched Calif. Police Investigate Peacock Shooting Death Raw: Protesters, Soldiers Clash in West Bank Police: Doctor Who Shot Gunman 'Saved Lives' 'Modern Family' Star on Gay Athletes Coming Out MN Twins Debut Beer Vending Machine DA: Pa. Doctor Fired Back at Hospital Gunman Raw: Iowa Police Dash Cam Shows Wild Chase Obama Seeks Limits on US Company Mergers Abroad Large Family to Share NJ Lottery Winnings U.S. Flights to Israel Resume After Ban Lifted Official: Air Algerie Flight 'probably Crashed' TSA Administrator on Politics and Flight Bans Raw: National Guard Helps Battle WA Wildfires Raw: Ukraine's Donetsk Residents Flee Senators Push to End Hamas Threat in Cease-Fire A Young Victim's Premonition, Hug Before MH17 Raw: Deadly Storm Hits Virginia Campground Death Penalty Expert: 'This is a Turning Point' Raw: MH17 Victim's Bodies Arrive in Netherlands
NDN Video
Bill Murray Continues To Be Just Bill Murray By Eating Some Free Bill Murray Ice Cream Deja vu: Another NYPD officer choke-holding a suspect Hillary Clinton Blamed Bill's Affair With Monica Lewinsky On Abuse He Suffered As A Child 'Fifty Shades of Grey': Watch the Super Sexy First Trailer Now! Reports: Ravens RB Ray Rice Suspended For 1st 2 Games Of The Season Chapter Two: Becoming a first-time director Air Algerie plane with 119 on board missing over Mali Diamond Stone, Malik Newman, Josh Jackson and others showcase talent Free Arturo - The World's Saddest Polar Bear A Look Back at Batman On Film Through The Years LeBron James -- Dropped $2k On Cupcake Apology ... Proceeds To Benefit Charity Snoop Dogg Says He Smoked Weed at the White House Raw: Fight Breaks Out in Ukraine Parliament Chris Pratt Interrupts Interview To French Braid Intern's Hair Shirtless Super Mario Balotelli Dances While Ironing - @TheBuzzeronFOX Whoa! Watch "Housewives" Star Do the Unthinkable LeBron apologizes to neighbors with cupcakes Justin Bieber In Calvin Klein Underwear Shoot Samsung Pre-Trolls The IPhone 6 With New Ad Jimmy Kimmel Introduces His Baby Girl
Parade
Magazine

Click HERE to read all your Parade favorites including Hollywood Wire, Celebrity interviews and photo galleries, Food recipes and cooking tips, Games and lots more.