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Local Red Cross Worker Shares Experience from Sandy
As hundreds of volunteers from across the country continue to help in the aftermath of Superstorm Sandy, the job is over for one Oklahoma man.
As a disaster coordinator, Steve Klapp helps in the beginning stages after a disaster like Sandy. It's Klapp's job to survey and assess the damage so the Red Cross knows where relief is needed and where to send additional volunteers. As he puts it, he is the first one in and first one out. Klapp was deployed to New Jersey two days before Sandy made landfall on October 29.
"This storm came, hunkered down, watched the wind blow, watched the the road flood across the street from the hotel and we lost power. It was completely dark in the hotel," Klapp said.
Klapp said the power did not come back for several days, interrupting disaster relief plans.
"The first couple of days, the initial headquarters' power was out , so we had to work out of an impromptu headquarters which was difficult," Klapp said. "Cell towers were out and internet was pretty much nonexistent, so it made it very challenging."
But Klapp said his job was successful, in part because of technology developed in Oklahoma. For the first time, instead of sending ground crews to survey the hard-hit areas, the Red Cross used a sort of reverse look up. The new technology allows the organization to get address information from other disaster agencies, like FEMA to collect information on damaged homes.
"We were very pleased with the outcome of that because we did not have 150 people on the ground. We were able to collect the same information with a team of seven people and that was a pretty amazing job," Klapp said.
Klapp said about 42,000 homes were damaged in New Jersey alone.
In total, 22 volunteers from the Central and Western Oklahoma Region helped or are helping in the northeast. One addition volunteer from the chapter will be deployed on Monday.
Posted: Friday, November 16 2012, 09:41 PM CST
IN OKLAHOMA NEWS
Wife guilty in Nichols Hills fire chief slaying
May 22, 2013 00:24 GMT
EL RENO, Okla. (AP) -- A jury in El Reno has convicted Rebecca Bryan of the murder of her husband, Nichols Hills Fire Chief Keith Bryan, and recommended a sentence of life in prison without parole.
Jurors reached the Tuesday verdict after about four hours of deliberation.
The 54-year-old Bryan claimed an intruder had shot her husband, though police found her Ruger pistol in a clothes dryer in their home after the shooting.
The gun was matched to the bullet used to shoot Keith Bryan in 2011 at the couple's Mustang home. Police also found a spent shell casing and a left-handed rubber glove wrapped in a bullet-riddled blanket.
The Oklahoman reports (http://is.gd/mvC6Mi ) Bryan didn't display her emotions when the verdict was read. Her lawyer gave her a hug and told her he was sorry.
Information from: The Oklahoman, http://www.newsok.com
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