The week of May 20th has been a week of tragedy in Oklahoma as an F5 tornado came and swept through Moore. It has affected many lives, homes and businesses and has caused an estimated total of $2 billion in damage.

Congressman Tom Cole has been in Oklahoma this week to survey the damage of his hometown of Moore. He was in Lawton today to thank all the 43 first responders for their assistance in the tornado struck town.

“I lived in Moore for 53 years I grew up four blocks away from the house I have now both my parents and grandparents lived in so we are pretty deeply rooted there,” Cole said. “When something like that happens to your home you grieve when you see it anyplace but it has an extra dimension on it.”

Cole states that devastation he has seen in the past couple of days is unearthly with many people and businesses uprooted from their homes working towards rebuilding the community and their lives.

“Every time you look at a destroyed house that’s a family that’s been uprooted and every time you look at a business that’s the people that worked there and the owner they don’t have a job now and they don’t know what their future is going to be,” Cole said.

According to Congressman Cole 33,000 people have been displaced from their homes and businesses with 24 people dead.

“Nobody with the resources they have can handle something like this so it is first responders like the 43 that came up from Lawton to help us out in bringing equipment, their skill, energy and compassion that make the difference,” Cole said.

The Congressman plans to stop in Newcastle, Fletcher and Little Axe. These areas were affected by the same storm that hit Moore.

The City of Moore stated yesterday that they are no longer in need of donated supplies. The City is however still in need of monetary donations for rebuilding homes and fixing other damaged parts of their community.

Congressman Cole and Governor Mary Fallin will be working closely together in looking into ways to use the Oklahoma state government rainy day fund to build safe rooms and shelters at schools to make sure that if another tornado were to strike students would have a place to go to be safe.

Listen here for the Nancy Mace’s Full Interview with Congressman Tom Cole


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