theadanews.com - Ada, Oklahoma

Local News

May 22, 2013

Harrowing scene inside grade school destroyed by tornado

Moore —

Kelly Law and other teachers marshaled students into the main hallway and central bathrooms at Plaza Towers Elementary School just before Monday’s tornado ripped apart the building with winds up to 200 mph.

“It sounded like somebody was going through with a mower and hitting a tin roof,” said Law, a teacher’s assistant. “... I had my eyes shut. All of us teachers were covering as many heads as we could.”

Nine children were among at least two dozen people killed by Monday’s tornado in Moore and Oklahoma City, according to the latest death toll reported by The Associated Press. Some victims were said to be inside Plaza Towers.

Law said she didn’t know of anyone who died although she worried about a third-grade class in an auxiliary building behind the main part of the school.

“We were safe,” she said. “All of the outside rooms - completely demolished. All of our cars were tossed over.”

The massive tornado spun along a path eerily similar to that of a May 3, 1999, tornado that killed 43 people in Moore.

“It’s just hard to believe something like this could happen again to Moore,” said Gov. Mary Fallin during a press conference outside Moore City Hall on Monday. “Our prayers and thoughts are with the Oklahoma families that have been hit hard by this terrible storm.”

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