Creek County's disaster recovery center closes Friday

CREEK COUNTY, Okla. - The disaster recovery center in Creek County closed up shop Friday.

Since it opened on August 27, 700 residents came through the doors to get assistance. Wildfire victims have received more than $7 million in federal aid.

"I lived in a two-story home and it burned completely to the ground," said wildfire victim Michelle Rowell.

Rowell is one of the many who received federal aid. She is still living on her property, but without proper plumbing and in a donated camper.

"It's just been really difficult but they've been a really good help here," said Rowell.

She says the disaster recovery center has been a pillar of support for her since it opened and not just because they've helped with financial aid.

"I've been to FEMA everyday, they've given me moral support in so many ways. They are a great bunch of ladies," said Rowell.

Now she has to say goodbye, which is why she visited the recovery center Friday.  

She and her sister showed support to the FEMA employees with flowers.

Rowell got her caseworker a small angel statue.  

"She's taken so much out of her time to help me to get what I needed to get what I needed to, to get my family and us on our feet," said Rowell.

That's part of the reason FEMA sets up the disaster recovery centers.

"When people have gone through so much trauma just for them to sit down and meet face to face with somebody that's going to help," said Patricia Brach, a public information officer with FEMA.

The center provided a place for residents to understand the paperwork involved with getting aid, place to use phones and computers but you can see by the empty seats, but now the need is not as a great and residents are moving forward.

Rowell is using her federal aid to buy a new mobile home.

"We're going to look this weekend, Thursday, Friday and Saturday. So we will find something within our budget," said Rowell.
    
Even though the recovery center is closed residents can still apply for aid until October 22.  

Call 1(800) 621-FEMA or log onto disasterassistance.gov

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