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Teens from Texas spend summer vacation cleaning storm damage in Claremore

BOUNCE volunteer student group work on homes in Claremore after tornado
Posted at 6:18 PM, Jul 09, 2024

CLAREMORE, Okla. — Work continues in Claremore after an EF-3 tornado touched down in the area nearly two months ago, and assistance groups are still working with homeowners.

On one side of town, July 9 marked the first day FEMA Disaster Survivor Assistance personnel met door-to-door with neighbors still reeling.

"We want to really reach the people who are underrepresented in the community, people who normally don't have access to, say, internet or not even leaving the house, for example," Nam Lamore told 2 News. "The deadline is the middle of August, so register with FEMA."

On the other side of town, it's summer vacation time for Kamryn Martinez's family, but she and her siblings, along with her parents, are working on a roof that was destroyed by the tornado.

She and other Brownfield, Texas kids are spending part of their break in Claremore representing BOUNCE Student Disaster Recovery, a volunteer program part of the Texas Baptists Convention.

"You get to do all kinds of disaster relief and meet all kinds of people and share the Word with everybody," Martinez said.

The number one thing on so many residents' minds more than a month after the tornado hit: having a roof back over their heads. That's the case at Teresa Graham's home.

"The tornado pulled the trees are around my house from that property and took my fence out, took the roof out. Knocked my shed off the foundation. Quite a bit of damage," Graham said.

Graham now gets to see her roof get repaired for free by the teens from BOUNCE, and her faith gets rewarded.
"Never thought any of this would happen," Graham added. "They're a miracle."

"We stay in their hearts forever, you know? They'll know who BOUNCE is," Martinez said, adding this is at least the fifth trip she's been on to help an affected area. "And they're gonna remember each and every one of us and what we've done and what the Lord has brought to them."

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