MOORE, Okla. -- It's time once again to recognize outstanding Oklahomans with our Spirit Bank “Pay it 4ward.” We receive thousands of nominations each week, but this week's selection was unanimous.
We are honoring the Moore teachers who literally put their lives on the line for their students. NewsChannel 4's Lance West has the largest Pay it 4ward ever awarded to these deserving heroes.
The teachers at Plaza Towers and Briarwood Elementary knew danger was coming, and yet, they chose to stay; to risk their lives for the sake of the children. They don't like the hero title, but we are obviously giving it to them.
Laura Atterbury is a Briarwood parent. She and her friends are forever grateful for the heroes of May 20th.
“They weren't covering their own faces because they were covering the kids,” Atterbury says. “It's really hard to put yourself in that position, what they really went through for our babies. We all have school aged kids so all of our teachers are doing the same thing. They put their lives on the line. Yes they did. They put their lives on the line and I don't think people realize they had an opportunity to get in their cars and go. All of them did, and they didn't.”
In the days following the deadly tornado, a group established "Restore Moore; Project teacher." It’s a crusade to help the teachers recover and replace everything taken by Mother Nature.
“When I saw this horrible tragedy, I thought ‘Oh My God’ those teachers have lost all those things in those rooms,” Brandye Taylor, with Restore Moore; Project Teacher says.
Jane Martin is a retired librarian and knows about loss. Her school burned to the ground in 2007, destroying all of her tools and treasures. Jane's familiarity with devastation prompted her to nominate "Restore Moore; Project Teacher"
“Pay it 4ward has helped all kinds of organizations. I thought this was a worthy cause to help these teachers rebuild,” Martin says.
“We're giving $4,850, most of which was raised by our employees because we were so touched by this project and touched by your nomination. We know after watching Lance outside the schools how bad the devastation was,” David Feisal, with Spirit Bank says. “And we hope this $4,850 will help them reach their goal to restock those classrooms.”
NewsChannel 4 and Spirit Bank met the "Restore Moore" team at Plaza Towers. We got them here under the "disguise" of a feature story on their inspiring campaign.
These Moore teachers are heroes for what they did and you're heroes for what you're doing also. You are getting these kids back in a safe and positive environment next school year. So, we're going to give them $400? We're going to give them more than $400. Thanks to Spirit Bank and their employees, I have a check for $4,850.
The group, “Restore Moore, Project Teacher,” hopes to raise enough money to give every single teacher here a $1,000 gift card and a new beginning.
With this generous donation from Spirit Bank they are that much closer to achieving their dream and rewarding Moore teachers for a job well done.