Calera student athletes and teachers cleanup storm damage

By: Allison Harris Email
By: Allison Harris Email

CALERA, OKLAHOMA -- For athletes, gameday superstitions are serious; Calera's baseball and softball team members say what's more serious is helping their community when they need it.

After Sunday's storm, the town needs all the helping hands it can get.

It's gameday for Calera's high school baseball and softball teams.

Typically, they'd be...

"Go to the field, work out, do anything to get better," baseball player Lucas Wright said.

But Tuesday, players aren't following their typical pre-game routine. Gameday preps have been thrown out the window.

"We're just kinda helping out the community, see what we can't finish up before our game, then we'll probably come back after the game's over, and if we don't have school we'll probably come back tomorrow morning," baseball player Michael Trammell said.

Generous athletes were spread out across the city Monday and Tuesday, picking up the pieces of their community.

"We helped out all day yesterday, we started at 9:00 in the morning, didn't go home until about 8:00," Wright said.

Softball player Taylor Pickett is also playing in her team's game, but that isn't stopping her from lending a hand throughout the day.

She says this a rewarding experience.

"It's humbling because all the people can't do it by themselves and everyone's helping and just coming together as a group and a town and just cleaning everything up," Pickett said.

And it's not just softball and baseball players up to their knees in branches and dirt. Teachers have joined the relief efforts.

"Just knowing that these students could have been taking their day off, at home in the air conditioner, it just gave us that little bit more of a push to step it up and help," Calera teacher Macy Bryant said.

"We are role models for our students and we teach our children, you know, things that they need to do. I just hope that they learn that it's good to help each other and to help one another," Calera teacher Kristi Robinson said.

Calera Police Chief Don Hyde says he's blown away by these charitable teachers and students.

"Your heart's about to explode with just the amount of love and caring that they have for the little town," Hyde said.

Trammell says his team bonded while volunteering and he hopes that shows on the ball field.

"I feel like it helped us out with just communication and team work. I feel like we just got a little bit closer," Trammell said.

National Weater Service confirmed that there was not a tornado that hit Calera on Sunday night, but there were straight line winds.

OG&E says that all of the power that they control has been restored.

Calera schools will re-open Wednesday.

Emergency officials ask Calera residents to conserve water and stockpile any debris in their neighborhoods; crews will come pick up the damage and take it to a landfill in Durant. FEMA will assess the landfill and reimburse Calera for damages.


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