OKLAHOMA CITY – A familiar sound will soon be heard again in downtown Oklahoma City.
Saturday, the First United Methodist Church worked to re-install its historic bells.
For six years, the bells have been silent.
“Our goal right now is to bring the bells back to the city,” said Don Kuntze with the church’s board of trustees.
After the Oklahoma City bombing and weather damaged the bell tower, the music had to stop.
Ever since, members have been working to restore the structure.
“They did a pretty substantial frame to the original structure of the church, put in a new roof,” said Chris Janka, the board chair.
Now that the bell tower is stronger than before, it is ready to support the 11 bells donated to the church back in 1922.
“These bells were originally donated to the church by the Frederick Gross family,” Janka said. “It’s just great to know that we’re bringing that back and part of their memory.”
However, getting the bells back home has not been easy.
“The smallest one is about 470 pounds and the biggest one, the swinging bell, is about 2,200 pounds. So, we’re supporting an awful lot of weight up there,” Kuntze said.
The hard work has been well worth it for members who cannot wait to hear the bells’ sweet sounds again.
“This is awesome. We’re really, really excited about this. This is going to be a great gift to the city again,” Kuntze said.
The bells will ring for the first time again on Christmas Eve.
That will be exactly 94 years after they were originally put in place.
The restoration project cost about $85,000.
All of the money was donated.