Rebuilding trailer park destroyed by tornado


BETHEL ACRES, OK – It’s been a devastating four weeks for those living in the Steelman Estates trailer park in Bethel Acres. Their homes were annihilated in the May 19th tornado.

Now, some are expecting a sigh of relief as they learn volunteers are working to build them new homes.

In the neighborhood, trailers are torn, ripped and shredded. Others are barely standing.

“This wall it just doesn’t stay anymore,” said Chelsea Cullip. “The roof was over in the neighbor’s yard.”

Just 16-years-old, Cullip’s home is in no condition for her and her father to live in, but it’s all they have.

“It’s just me and my dad out here,” said Cullip. “We don’t have family so finding a place to stay wasn’t easy because we don’t have a lot of money.”

Out here, working families like the Cullips live among the rubble week after week.

The tornado that tore through Steelman Estates flattened nearly 100 houses, and volunteer organizers say 75 percent of the people who live there have little or no insurance. So all they have left are the piles of that used to be their homes.

A sight Tonia Allen, a volunteer with God’s Hand Ups from Texas, set out to change.

“I had a vision,” said Allen. “They need homes and not a year from now. They need homes in three months.”

Her vision is coming together. More than six local and national organizations are gathering the supplies.

“They will help us with building supplies as they come available,” said Allen.

Nationally, World Vision plans to donate supplies for the first seven homes.
Locally, Global Production Solutions says it will help store the supplies.

“This is mind blowing. Reality just set in today That we’re really going to do this,” said Allen.

An unbelievable reality to this Cullip.

“I was very thankful. I was excited.”

If you would like to help by donating building supplies, call God’s Hand Ups 903-931-2892.