MOORE, Okla. (May 22, 2013) – After the devastating EF-5 tornado passed through south Oklahoma City and Moore on Monday afternoon, Oklahoma Christian senior baseball player Chris Burgess – who lives just south of Moore in Norman – wanted to do something to help.
Many of his OC teammates felt the same and they spent Wednesday afternoon in the parking of a Walmart store located on South 19th Street in Moore, doing what they could to assist in the recovery efforts in the hard-hit area.
Seven OC players – Burgess, Caleb Teel, Caleb Price, Kelby Reneau, Jordan Lopez, Cody Rosecrans and Tyler Sturges – helped clear out space in the store’s parking lot and pulled bottles of water and Gatorade off tractor-trailers. The Eagles also helped place the drinks on pallets, making it easier to transport and use for those involved in debris removal.
“We’d been talking about it since the tornado hit,” Burgess said. “Caleb Teel’s dad works as a regional manager for Walmart and when we found out we could help there, we decided to do that. We were just helping people who need it. We felt like we should get out in the community and do what we can. It’s not much, but it’s something someone else doesn’t have to do.”
Burgess, from West Chicago, Ill., spent one year playing at the University of Oklahoma before arriving at Oklahoma Christian this spring. He said he marvels at the spirit of Oklahomans who are showing resiliency in the face of disaster.
“I am proud that part of me is here in Oklahoma,” he said. “Oklahoma will always be a second home to me, no matter how far away I am. This is a special place.”
OC coach Lonny Cobble said he took pride in the fact that his players took it upon themselves to contribute to the tornado relief effort.
“These guys represented our university and our baseball program well,” Cobble said. “Things like this are what our program should be about. We are here to serve others.”