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Area Red Cross Volunteers help Oklahoma tornado victims

Posted by wlpo on June 14, 2013

Imagine traveling half-way across the country to help tornado victims only to end up crouched down in the basement of an airport because of another tornado.  It happened to retired nurses Nancy Burress and Kathy Koscielski.  The women from the Illinois Valley traveled to Oklahoma on May 31 to volunteer with the American Red Cross. 

          From the moment they arrived they were surrounded examples of nature’s fury.  Koscielski thought the Utica tornado had prepared her for a disaster, but it didn’t.

          The pair worked 12-hour shifts, sometimes following up with people who had visited their centers.  Burress says it was difficult finding people as many were forced to move from motel to motel and cell phones were going dead.

          Burress says many people saw their red vets and approached them just to talk.  She says the Red Cross gave the people hope and she’s glad she did it.

          Burress and Koscielski returned home Thursday night.  Both plan to continue volunteering but closer to home.

           You can hear the interview with Burress and Koscielski by visiting the WLPO AM and FM news page.

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