Stillwater News Press

Our World

November 20, 2013

As Moore rebuilds, survivors still face loss

MOORE — Six months after the May 20 tornado, Moore is rebuilding at a rapid pace. However, for many who lost everything in the storm recovery is an uphill battle.

“Every day I am still living tornado, tornado, tornado,” Jaime Russell-Bartlett said. Her family home was lost. It once stood about four houses from Briarwood Elementary School, which was hit directly. Her sister, who lived 14 houses down, also lost her home.

The family is rebuilding about one mile from where they used to live, and Russell-Bartlett’s sister has bought an already constructed home. Now the sisters will live 25 houses apart instead of 14.

Leaving Moore was never an option.

“It’s not going to do me any good to run,” Russell-Bartlett said. “I grew up in Moore. That whole left side of Moore is where my life is. People who grabbed their stuff and ran out of Oklahoma, I don’t understand.”

Six months after the storm, she is immersed in home construction.

“It’s a big strain on your entire life,” she said.

The process is stressful for the entire family. She said her son got a bad grade on a first grade assignment because he couldn’t remember his address. Russell-Bartlett said nobody realized that the little boy had lost his home and had since had three new addresses.

While they live in a rental home and work with builders and contractors on the new house, the family continues to deal with insurance companies.

Then there are the times when the family is simple faced with the fact that things they took for granted are gone.

“The other day when it was so cold, I realized I don’t have a winter coat.” Off to the store she went. Again.

Everything vanished on May 20.

“There was nothing salvageable,” she said.

Text Only | Photo Reprints
Our World
Must Read
Buy & Share Photos
NewsPress e-Edition
NewsPress Specials
AP Video
Texas Scientists Study Ebola Virus Smartphone Powered Paper Plane Debuts at Airshow Southern Accent Reduction Class Cancelled in TN Raw: Deadly Landslide Hits Indian Village Obama Chides House GOP for Pursuing Lawsuit New Bill Aims to Curb Sexual Assault on Campus Russia Counts Cost of New US, EU Sanctions 3Doodler Bring 3-D Printing to Your Hand Six PA Cops Indicted for Robbing Drug Dealers Britain Testing Driverless Cars on Roadways Raw: Thousands Flocking to German Crop Circle At Least 20 Chikungunya Cases in New Jersey Raw: Obama Eats Ribs in Kansas City In Virginia, the Rise of a New Space Coast Raw: Otters Enjoy Water Slides at Japan Zoo NCAA Settles Head-injury Suit, Will Change Rules Raw: Amphibious Landing Practice in Hawaii Raw: Weapons Fire Hits UN School in Gaza Raw: Rocket Launches Into Space With Cargo Ship Broken Water Main Floods UCLA
Stocks
NDN Video
Heartwarming 'Batkid Begins' Documentary is Tear-Jerker Orlando Bloom 'Takes a Swing' at Justin Bieber In Ibiza Pitch Invading Morons Cause Chaos - @TheBuzzeronFOX Sadie Doesn't Want Her Brother to Grow Up "Maxim" Hotness! See Jessica Alba's Sizzling Spread Two women barely avoid being hit by train Broken Water Main Floods UCLA Orlando Bloom and Justin Bieber Reportedly Came To Blows In Ibiza Meet the Man Behind Dumb Starbucks Chris Pratt Adorably Surprises Kids at a 'Guardians of the Galaxy' Screening NOW TRENDING: Peyton Manning dancing at practice "The Bachelorette" Makes Her Decision Thieves pick the wrong gas station to rob Golden Sisters on '50 Shades' trailer: 'Look At That Chest!' Staten Island Man's Emotional Dunk Over NYPD Car - @TheBuzzeronFOX GMA: Dog passes out from excitment to see owner Baseball Hall of Famers Inducted 'Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1' Sneak Peek Florida Keys Webcam Captures Turtles Hatching Morgan Freeman Sucks Down Helium on 'Tonight Show'