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Tornado recovery continues in McClain County

Residents of McClain County are still recovering from tornado damage. Homes still are being rebuilt from the May 24 tornado.
BY ROBERT MEDLEY rmedley@opubco.com Published: November 21, 2011
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/articleid/3625206/1/pictures/1567063">Photo - TORNADO DISASTER RECOVERY / TORNADO DAMAGE: Charlene Phillips shows Linda Molsbee, McClain County Long Term Disaster Recovery Committee chairman, her new home on Wednesday, Nov. 16, 2011, in Newcastle, Okla.  The home stands on the site where a 2011 tornado destroyed her home and that of several neighbors.  Photo by Steve Sisney, The Oklahoman ORG XMIT: KOD <strong>STEVE SISNEY - THE OKLAHOMAN</strong>
TORNADO DISASTER RECOVERY / TORNADO DAMAGE: Charlene Phillips shows Linda Molsbee, McClain County Long Term Disaster Recovery Committee chairman, her new home on Wednesday, Nov. 16, 2011, in Newcastle, Okla. The home stands on the site where a 2011 tornado destroyed her home and that of several neighbors. Photo by Steve Sisney, The Oklahoman ORG XMIT: KOD STEVE SISNEY - THE OKLAHOMAN

“I still cry,” she said. “People have forgotten about it, but we still have to hang our clothes outside to dry. It's been like camping out.”

Marcus Phillips, 38, is doing most of the work on the new house.

Kenneth Walker Jr., who lives next door to the Phillips in the Carr addition, lost his wheelchair in the tornado. His house was damaged and his car was destroyed. Repair work on his house has not been completed and he is still living in it.

Another problem across McClain County is debris, Molsbee said. Uprooted trees, broken branches and trash remain strewed throughout the county.

“You just go around and look at what is still left,” Molsbee said. “I'm still trying to figure out what we can do because we have a staggering amount of debris, especially in the creek beds.”

Federal funds have been used for a lot of tornado recovery so far, says Keli Cain, spokeswoman for the Oklahoma Department of Emergency Management.

She said $843,097 has been spent providing residents of the county housing assistance for tornado disaster-related needs.

Also, $1,020,241 has been spent providing furnishings, transportation and medical and other needs for tornado victims, Cain said.


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