Thursday, May 23, 2013

Lawmakers Thank First Responders and Volunteers, Encourage Donations for Victims

OKLAHOMA CITY – Several state lawmakers today expressed their gratitude toward all those Oklahomans and residents of other states who have worked so hard to assist with the rescue, recovery, clean up and donation drives following the devastating tornadoes in Moore and Little Axe on Sunday and Monday.

State Representatives Paul Wesselhöft, Mark McBride, Josh Cockroft and Jon Echols, each of whom represent a portion of Cleveland County, would like to thank all of the rescue workers, first responders, firemen, police officers, guardsmen and volunteers for all of their hard work during this time of need and extend their gratitude to each individual who has donated money and supplies for the victims and volunteers, said Wesselhöft..

“Every donation is appreciated, regardless of size,” said Wesselhöft, R-Moore. “The Salvation Army has reported that a donation as small as $10 can feed a victim for an entire day. With estimated damages in excess of $2 billion, every contribution is vital.”

Wesselhöft noted that Devon Energy and Continental Resources Inc. have each pledged donations of $2.5 million, while several other individuals and organizations have each pledged donations of $1 million each.  

“The list of private donations does not stop there,” said McBride, R-Moore. “At least twenty other private companies and individuals have pledged generous sums to help repair the damage caused by the tornado to City of Moore and other areas throughout the state. The state of Oklahoma is expected to appropriate an additional $45 million to relief efforts from the state’s ‘Rainy Day’ fund.

“The generosity of Oklahomans and other American citizens has been amazing,” said Echols, R-Oklahoma City. “As I understand, within just a few days, donations have surpassed the dollar amounts donated during any other natural disaster to occur in the United States, with total contributions now close to $70 million. And that doesn’t even include state or federal matching aid.”

In addition to monetary contributions, fundraising events are being held across the state to raise money for the relief efforts. Country stars and Oklahoma natives Blake Shelton and Toby Keith are each performing benefit concerts for victims of the storm damage. Other events include local concerts, t-shirt promotions, and restaurant specials with all pledging to donate the proceeds to victims of the storm.

Assemblyman Phillip Goldfeder of Queens, New York visited the state yesterday to announce contributions from his district. Goldfeder told the House of Representatives that his home and more than 85 percent of his district in Queens were destroyed during Hurricane Sandy, and that some of the first responders in his district were from Oklahoma. He visited Oklahoma Tuesday to repay the kindness shown by Oklahomans, touring the devastated areas with Wesselhöft and coordinating relief efforts in New York City to arrange for relief supplies to be sent to Oklahoma within the week.

“The state of Oklahoma is loved by its own people, and people throughout the country and world,” said Cockroft, R-Tecumseh. “With the generosity and help of those throughout the world reaching out, Cleveland County, and other areas damaged by the tornado, will be rebuilt to be even stronger than before.”

Below is a list of contributors to relief efforts to date. This list is expected to continue growing and is not indicative of all those providing services or donations. If citizens are aware of other contributions being made, please contact Rep. Wesselhoft. He can be reach at the state Capitol by email,, or by phone, (405)557-7343.

Devon Energy
$2.5 Million
Continental Resources Inc.
$2.5 Million
$1 Million
Kevin Durant
$1 Million
Russell Westbrook
$1 Million
OKC Thunder/Thunder Cares
$1 Million
$1 Million
$1 Million
The American Legion
$1 Million to veterans affected
Phillips 66
$1 Million
$1 Million
Home Depot Foundation
$1 million; $250,000 to RedCross; $100,000 Team Rubicon
Koch Brothers
$1 Million
George Kaiser
$1 Million
Cox Enterprises
$1 Million
Crossings Community Church
$1 Million
Apache Energy
$1 Million
$1 Million
Private Donor
$1 Million
Oklahoma Gas & Electric
Exxon Mobile
Ford Motor Co. & Dealers
$400,000; A Ford Transit Connect van, $500 vehicle purchase assistance to victims
$250,000 match, up to $500,000
$350,000, and match up to $150,000
Convoy of Hope
United Way of Central Oklahoma
World Vision
BancFirst w/ Moore Ministerial Alliance
General Motors Foundation
BancFirst w/ Moore Ministerial Alliance
Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Oklahoma
$25,000, Tetanus Shots
FAA Credit Union
$2,500 matching contributions
Roosevelt Elementary (Ponca City)
$1,400 of purchased goods instead of field trip
Ponca City Walmart
Southern Baptist Disaster Relief
Tractor-trailers of water and roof tarps
Sam’s Club
Free membership, wi-fi, electronic charging
OSU Veterinary Center for Health Services
Care for injured animals
Up to 16 hours of paid leave for volunteers

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