Tag Archives: Oklahoma City

OKC Historian Fights To Save Old Film Exchange Building

By hnn

OKLAHOMA CITY –

The fight to save an historic building downtown is beginning to gain some steam.

The old Film Exchange building is set to be demolished, but a local historian is fighting to keep it. The plan is to make way for the new $130-million 70-acre central park planned downtown.

There’s a couple of things that the MAPS planning committee is going to want for this building to have a future. It has to work within the scope of the original plan, and somebody has to pay for it to be renovated.

It’s the beginning of what supporters believe could be a long fight to keep an historic piece of downtown Oklahoma City….

Source:
News 9 (OK)

Source URL:
http://www.news9.com/story/22936946/okc-group-fights-to-save-old-film-exchange-building

Date:
7-25-13

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Source: FULL ARTICLE at History News Network – George Mason University

Parents face tough choice when tornadoes bear down

Parents in a suburban Oklahoma City school district received a text message as an ominous tornado approached. Their children were being held at school until the storm passed or their parents picked them up.

Suddenly, parents had a gut-wrenching choice. Trust the safety of the school? Or drive frantically ahead of a massive tornado and attempt to take their children home?

Several students who remained at Plaza Towers Elementary School died when the tornado hit Monday. Yet all of the students at Briarwood Elementary apparently emerged alive from the rubble.

Ronald Stephens is executive director of the National School Safety Center. He says parents often want to rush to their child’s side. But he says it’s hard to know whether children will be safer at school or elsewhere.

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Source: FULL ARTICLE at Fox US News

Okla. residents come home to pick up the pieces

The residents of Moore, Okla., affected by a deadly tornado are coming back to find their belongings scattered and their homes left in pieces.

Monday’s tornado killed at least 24 people, countless homes and reduced one elementary school almost entirely to rubble. While officials still grapple with how to rebuild and how to pay for it, people in this Oklahoma City suburb are anxious to start the process of rebuilding.

Colleen Arvin, an 83-year-old grandmother, walked with her son and grandsons through what was left of her home. Part of her roof was sitting in the front yard, and the siding from the front of the house was gone.

She laughed when a grandson found her keys. She said: “Oh thank God. We can get in the house.”

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Source: FULL ARTICLE at Fox US News

Notebook: Thunder 104, Rockets 101

THE FACTS: The Oklahoma City Thunder took a rollercoaster ride to victory in their first game without All-Star point guard Russell Westbrook. The Thunder squandered a 26-point second-quarter lead before Kevin Durant received a friendly bounce on a critical 3-point attempt in the final minute of regulation to help lift Oklahoma City to a 104-101 win over the Houston Rockets in Game 3 of their first-round Western Conference playoff series Saturday at Toyota Center.

Source: FULL ARTICLE at NBA

Oklahoma man missing in Oregon was hallucinating, sheriff says

The sheriff heading up the search for a young Oklahoma man missing in the wilds of southeastern Oregon said Friday the young man was hallucinating the last time he telephoned his family, and told his girlfriend he was seeing plants coming out of the ground and running.

Dustin Self, 19, has been missing a month since setting out from his family home outside Oklahoma City to test himself against the wilderness. He had recently watched the movie “Into The Wild” about a young man who renounces his worldly goods to live in the Alaska wilderness, only to die there. Self had also bought a lot of backpacking gear and planned to check out churches in Oregon that practice a South American religion that uses a hallucinogenic tea as a sacrament.

Sheriff Dave Glerup said he thinks Self is either dead or walked off Steens Mountain and hitched a ride somewhere after his truck got stuck on a backcountry track. With high winds over the mountain and heavy snow on the ground, there was no search planned for Friday. Searchers hoped a break in the weather Saturday would allow planes to fly over the mountain.

“There is evidence now he was hallucinating at the time he talked with his father,” Glerup said from his office in Burns. “His father says that the young man had been using drugs in the past,” and was using drugs to treat attention deficit disorder to stay awake on his drive to Oregon.

“There is evidence he may have been either under the influence of drugs or sleep deprivation at the time he called his father” to report he was lost, the sheriff said, while also referencing Self’s conversation with his girlfriend.

Investigators also found on Self’s laptop that he had been visiting websites about hallucinogenic drugs such as peyote and PCP, Glerup said.

Self’s parents said he was interested in the Church of the Holy Light of the Queen, in Ashland, and the Church of the Divine Rose in Portland, which practice a religion that blends Christian theology with indigenous beliefs from Brazil. The church has gone to court to defend its use of a hallucinogenic tea imported from Brazil, called ayahuasca, which is used as a sacrament.

Jane Seligson, a founding member of the Church of the Holy Light of the Queen, said neither church had ever heard from Self.

“I can tell you we never heard from this young man,” she said. “He might have said he was going to contact people from the church. He never contacted anybody. We have quite a rigorous process for anybody coming to church.”

A short break in windy weather on Thursday allowed a rancher with a helicopter to search the rugged mountainside where Self’s truck was found. However, rancher Patty Jenkins found no trace of Self around some cabins used by cowboys and hunters uphill from where the truck was found, and no tracks in the fresh snow, Glerup said. Self’s lime-green tent was nowhere to be seen.

Self’s pickup was found Monday at about the

From: http://feeds.foxnews.com/~r/foxnews/national/~3/Dv0Rkj1mT9s/

Yann Danis perfect in Barons 1-0 win over Heat; Toni Rajala has only goal

OKLAHOMA CITY – Yann Danis made 24 saves as the Oklahoma City Barons shut out the Abbotsford Heat 1-0 on Friday in American Hockey League action.

Left-winger Toni Rajala was the only scorer for Oklahoma City (38-25-11), the AHL farm team of t…

From: http://www.nhl.com/ice/news.htm?id=666793

Oklahoma City marks 18th anniversary of bombing

It’s been 18 years since a truck bomb detonated outside Oklahoma City‘s federal building, but family members of the 168 people killed in the attack said Friday their memories of the carnage and their sense of loss are as vivid as ever following the Boston Marathon explosions.

“It opens that wound,” said Dawn DeArmon, whose mother, Federal Employees Credit Union employee Kathy Leinen, was killed in the April 19, 1995, bombing of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building.

Joyce Cleveland‘s daughter, Social Security Administration worker Pamela Cleveland Argo, also died in the bombing. She said Monday’s explosions in Boston, which killed three people and injured more than 180, stirred up past emotions and reminded her how difficult it’s been to cope with Pamela’s death.

“We just know what they’re going through and what they’ve got to go through,” Cleveland said. “They’ve got a long way to go.”

She and DeArmon were among 800 people who crowded into a church near the former site of the federal building to remember those killed, those who survived, and search and rescue workers who sifted through the rubble from the nine-story structure for weeks after the attack.

Speakers at the Oklahoma City ceremony remembered Boston even as they honored their own bombing victims.

“Our hearts break for our fellow Americans,” Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin said. “We grieve for those who have been killed.”

U.S. Rep. James Lankford said many bombing survivors and victims’ family members believe they have recovered from their sense of loss until tragedies like Boston occur.

“We see the coverage and the footage and all the raw emotions come back again. And we realize it’s still extremely tender to us,” Lankford said.

Boston filled people’s conversations afterward, too.

“You turn on the TV and you’re living this over and over,” said Jannie Coverdale, whose two grandsons, 5-year-old Aaron Coverdale and 2-year-old Elijah Coverdale, were among 19 children who died in the Oklahoma City bombing. “Even if we wanted to forget, we can’t forget.”

Family members placed flowers and mementos on empty chairs meant to honor each bombing victim at the Oklahoma City National Memorial & Museum on the

From: http://feeds.foxnews.com/~r/foxnews/national/~3/8VzL220yahU/

Ore. sheriff: Missing Okla. man was hallucinating

The sheriff heading up the search for a young Oklahoma man missing in the wilds of southeastern Oregon says the young man was hallucinating the last time he telephoned his family.

He also said he was seeing plants coming out of the ground and running in a call to his girlfriend.

Nineteen-year-old Dustin Self has been missing a month since setting out from his family home outside Oklahoma City to test himself against the wilderness.

He also planned to check out churches that practice a South American religion that uses a hallucinogenic tea as a sacrament.

Sheriff Dave Glerup said Friday he thinks Self is either dead or walked off Steens Mountain and hitched a ride somewhere after his truck got stuck on a backcountry track.

From: http://feeds.foxnews.com/~r/foxnews/national/~3/X2stPeddCAs/

Air search finds no trace of missing Okla. man

A short break in windy weather on Thursday allowed a rancher with a helicopter to search a rugged mountainside in southeastern Oregon for a young Oklahoma man who set out to test himself against the wilderness.

However, rancher Patty Jenkins saw no trace of Dustin Self, who was last heard from a month ago after being inspired by the movie “Into The Wild.” Self’s lime green tent was not visible, either.

Self’s pickup truck was found Monday on the northeast flank of Steens Mountain. Jenkins flew over the area and five nearby cabins used by hunters and cowboys.

Harney County Sheriff Dave Glerup said rescuers hope to mount another air search on Saturday, when high winds are forecast to subside.

Self, 19, left his family home in the Oklahoma City suburb of Piedmont to see if he could live in the wild and to investigate some churches that practice a South American religion that uses a hallucinogenic tea as a sacrament, his parents said.

One of the churches is in Ashland, and the other in Portland.

“I’m just so worried about him,” said Tammy Self, his mother.

Members of the sheriff’s office and others searched for Self on the side of Steens Mountain after a rancher found his pickup truck had slid off a backcountry track and gotten stuck.

Searchers on ATVs saw no tracks but checked out remote cabins and worked their way up the mountain. They discovered no sign of Self before bad weather curtailed their efforts, Deputy Missy Ousley said.

The teen was well-prepared with gear he bought just before leaving, but he has little experience in the wild beyond family camping trips, his parents said.

“He is not a survivalist,” said his father, Victor Self, a manager at a box plant in Oklahoma City. “He is a very urban child.”

His parents last heard from him March 15, when he called from the parking lot of a motel in northern Nevada as he spent the night in the cab of his pickup.

The next day, Self called his girlfriend

From: http://feeds.foxnews.com/~r/foxnews/national/~3/izmZJFjFT1o/

Texas fertilizer plant cited by state officials in 2006

The Texas fertilizer plant where an explosion killed as many as 15 people late Wednesday was cited by state officials nearly a decade ago for failing to obtain or to qualify for a permit, records show.

West Fertilizer Co. was cited by the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality in 2006 after it received a complaint in June of that year of a strong ammonia smell emanating from the 1,500-square foot facility in a farming community roughly 20 miles north of Waco. Agency records indicate that the person who lodged the complaint said a lingering ammonia smell was “very bad.”

The plant, which was founded in 1958 and generates an estimated $2 million in annual sales, reported to the Environmental Protection Agency and local public safety officials that it presented no risk of fire or explosion, according to documents cited by The Dallas Morning News.

The company, which employs up to 20 workers, reported having as many as 54,000 pounds of anhydrous ammonia in stock in an emergency planning report required of facilities that use toxic or hazardous chemicals. But the report, according to the newspaper, stated “no” under fire or explosive risks. The worst possible scenario, the report said, would be a 10-minute release of ammonia gas that would kill or injure no one.

The second-worst possibility projected was a leak from a broken hose used to transfer the product, which again would cause no injuries, the report indicated.

The plan said the facility did not have any other dangerous chemicals on hand. It says that the plan was on file with the local fire department and that the company had implemented proper safety rules, the newspaper reports.

Advisories on safe handling of anhydrous ammonia typically state that the chemical is not considered an explosion risk when in the air as a gas. They add, however, that it can explode in certain concentrations inside a container.

“Emergency responders should not mix water used for firefighting directly with anhydrous ammonia as this will result in warming of the product, causing the liquid to turn into a vapor cloud,” according to the website of Calamco, a growers’ cooperative in California.

Explosive hazards with fertilizer are more commonly linked to ammonium nitrate, which is widely used in agriculture and as a mining and construction explosive. A mixture of ammonium nitrate and fuel oil was used to construct the bomb that decimated the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City on April 19, 1995.

In 2001, an explosion at a chemical and fertilizer plant killed 31 people and injured more than 2,000 in Toulouse, France. The blast occurred in a hangar containing 300 tons of ammonium nitrate, which can be used for both fertilizer and explosives. The explosion came 10 days after the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks in the U.S., and raised fears at the time it was linked. A 2006 report blamed the blast on negligence.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

From: http://feeds.foxnews.com/~r/foxnews/national/~3/FY3Xnq9AWDg/

Extremely flammable compound in fertilizer speaks to its deadly history

Fertilizer has helped feed the world, but it can also be extremely dangerous, as demonstrated by the apparently accidental explosion Wednesday night in Texas, and by the 1995 terror bombing in Oklahoma City.

Commercial fertilizer typically contains ammonium nitrate, a compound that helps absorb moisture from the atmosphere. While it remains solid at room temperature, it can become extremely volatile if ignited or even heated, causing explosions or fires. Farmers who use it to get more crops out of their fields have also long harnessed its explosive power to clear fields and even form ponds.

Long before Wednesday night’s explosion in West, Texas, a small town near Waco, ammonium nitrate caused a massive explosion in Texas City in 1947. In that case, a fire broke out aboard a French ship docked at the tiny coastal town and ignited 2,300 tons of ammonium nitrate, killing nearly 600 people.

It has also been used widely to cause intentional deaths. In the Oklahoma City bombing, nearly 100 50-pound bags of ammonium nitrate, bought from a farming supply store, were used to make the truck bomb that killed 168 people when it exploded outside a federal courthouse.

Ammonium nitrate has been used as an oxidizing agent in explosives, including the homemade bombs known as improvised explosive devices.

Because of its extreme volatility, there are complex regulations governing the handling of ammonium nitrate, one of the main ones being a prohibition against storing it near combustible materials.

From: http://feeds.foxnews.com/~r/foxnews/national/~3/2vLdQLoqIXY/

Oklahoma teen inspired by 'Into the Wild' missing in remote Oregon terrain

An Oklahoma teenager who was inspired to live off the land by the movie “Into the Wild” is the target of a search effort in remote, rugged country in southeastern Oregon.

Dustin Self, 19, left his family home in the Oklahoma City suburb of Piedmont “to see if he could live in the wild,” and to investigate some churches that practice a South American religion that uses a hallucinogenic tea as a sacrament, his parents said. One is in Ashland, and the other in Portland.

The Harney County Sheriff’s Office and others searched for him on Tuesday on the northeast side of Steens Mountain after a rancher found his pickup truck had slid off a backcountry track and gotten stuck. Searchers on ATVs saw no tracks, but checked out remote cabins and worked their way up the mountain, with no sign of him before heavy snow and high winds curtailed their efforts, said Deputy Missy Ousley.

Authorities hoped for a break in the weather so they could send up a plane to look for him.

“We did everything we could to try to talk him out of it,” said his mother, Tammy Self. “He was leaving, no matter what.”

The teen was well-prepared with gear he bought just before leaving, but had little experience of life in the wild beyond family camping trips, his parents said.

“He is not a survivalist,” said his father, Victor Self, a manager at a box plant in Oklahoma City. “He is a very urban child.”

His parents last heard from him March 15, when he called from the parking lot of a motel in northern Nevada where he was spending the night in the cab of his pickup. The next day, Dustin called his girlfriend in Austin, Texas, to say he was lost after his GPS had sent him onto a road along the east side of Steens Mountain in the high desert of southeastern Oregon.

Ousley said a storekeeper in Fields recalled him asking for directions to Lakeview, which would have taken him a different direction than where his truck was found.

A religious young man raised in a non-denominational Protestant church, Dustin had been searching for meaning in his life, his mother said. He read books like “Human Race: Get Off Your Knees,” by David Icke, a former British sports reporter whose books about what he believes is really controlling life on earth are admired by conspiracy theorists. The last movie Dustin watched was “Into The Wild,” about a young man who gives up his worldly goods to live in the Alaskan wilderness. A clean-cut bodybuilder in high school, he had lately grown his hair long and wore a bandanna around his head.

His mother said, “I think he got a lot off the Internet.”

Tammy Self said her son is a vegetarian, with no desire to kill animals to eat.

“He thought he was going to eat berries,” she said. “We tried to tell him, berries don’t grow in wintertime.”

His father called the Harney County Sheriff’s Office on March 17, but a search

From: http://feeds.foxnews.com/~r/foxnews/national/~3/1yyCt72ku7M/

Series of moderate earthquakes shakes central Oklahoma

The U.S. Geological Survey says several earthquakes have shaken central Oklahoma.

USGS geophysicist Jana Pursley says the temblors began around 1:45 a.m. Tuesday and all were centered northeast of Oklahoma City. She said three earthquakes have been confirmed and that she was working on a confirming a possible fourth. She says the strongest was a magnitude 4.3 quake centered near the town of Luther.

Pursley says all the quakes were shallow, which is common for the area. She also says it’s common for several earthquakes or aftershocks to strike during a short period of time.

An official answering the dispatch line for the Oklahoma County Sheriff‘s office says they have received no reports of damage or injuries.

From: http://feeds.foxnews.com/~r/foxnews/national/~3/StUN8NjOsL8/

Series of earthquakes shakes central Oklahoma

The U.S. Geological Survey says several earthquakes have shaken central Oklahoma.

USGS geophysicist Jana Pursley says the temblors began around 1:45 a.m. Tuesday and all were centered northeast of Oklahoma City. She said three earthquakes have been confirmed and that she was working on a confirming a possible fourth. She says the strongest was a magnitude 4.3 quake centered near the town of Luther.

Pursley says all the quakes were shallow, which is common for the area. She also says it’s common for several earthquakes or aftershocks to strike during a short period of time.

An official answering the dispatch line for the Oklahoma County Sheriff‘s office says they have received no reports of damage or injuries.

From: http://feeds.foxnews.com/~r/foxnews/national/~3/19Xoe88c7gc/