Teen's anthem helps keep ‘Oklahoma Strong'
On May 20, thousands of Oklahomans watched helplessly as a monstrous tornado ravaged miles of homes and the trajectories of thousands of lives.
“It was just so surreal, I just couldn't believe it,” said Rebekah Willoughby, 15, of Chickasha. She said she felt helpless. “It was only about a quarter of a mile away from my grandmother's house.”
Her grandmother's house had been damaged in the May 3, 1999, tornado that tore through Moore.
But, as so many creative Oklahomans have, it didn't take long for Willoughby to find a way she could help — through her talent.
“I've been writing songs pretty much as long as I can remember. Since I was very little,” Willoughby said.
The morning after, Willoughby picked up her cobalt blue acoustic guitar and within 30 minutes, she said, she had written “Oklahoma Strong.”
“200 mile an hour wind will knock you down,
Just enough to make this place a ghost town,
Hear the wind whistling even without trees,
See the people falling down to their knees,
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