It was a beautiful, sunny day - not a cloud in the sky. I was doing a teaching internship with Mr. Stiglets, a first grade teacher at a school in Mid West City, just east of Oklahoma City.
9:00 A.M. - Time for school to begin. The kids were already busy doing their schoolwork. The school announcements came on over the intercom telling us about the day's events and telling us to have a good day. If they only knew what was to come.
9:02 A.M. - I heard a faint rumbling sound. It was so faint that the kids kept on working and didn't even notice. I thought it was maybe my imagination but a few minutes later, someone from the school office came to our room to inform Mr. Stiglets and me that there was an explosion, possibly a bombing in downtown Oklahoma City.
I began to really get worried because my mother lived in a sky rise apartment in downtown OKC, and my father worked downtown. I had no idea where the Murrah building was in comparison to where they lived and worked.
Then Mr. Stiglets said with a blank stare on his face, "My son works at the Murrah building!" He immediately left the room to call his son but he never answered the phone. He kept calling and calling but soon the phone system went down because of so many people calling downtown to see if their loved ones were okay.
We tried to go about our day as "usual" but it was so difficult. The unknown was almost unbearable. Hours later Mr. Stiglets finally received a phone call from his son! He was okay! He just so happened to be looking for a parking space when the explosion occurred. He was running late that day and should have been in his office. He shouldn't have been able to make that phone call. Many more miracles with similar stories were reported in the days after the bombing.
I finally heard from my step-mother that my dad was fine. His building, Liberty National Bank, was several blocks away. They felt the explosion but it didn't have any noticeable damage.
Everything on T.V. for the next week centered around the OKC Bombing. The details were so grim and bleak, but at the same time it was amazing to see so many people pull together and give of their time, services and monies and make something good of something that was so bad.
The following year, I found myself teaching kindergarten in Grapevine, Texas. I wanted my students to know about that day in history - minus all the graphic details to protect their little minds. But my students wanted those who were affected by the Bombing to know that their thoughts were with them. So they made a huge poster and on the anniversary date, I took it to the bombing site and hung it on the fence - couldn't miss it in bright yellow :-) I was so sad to see so much devastation - even a year later. Here's a few pics from that day...
So what do you do in the midst of tragedy? You move on. You pick up what's left of the pieces and move on. And that's just what everyone did. Of course there was much pain and suffering - you could not watch the news and not be affected by it. But God brought good out of something bad and made Oklahoman's strong in spite of it.