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Spavinaw Kids Back In School As Cleanup Continues After Tornado

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After only two missed days, students are back in school. After only two missed days, students are back in school.
The office is still a mess, but the superintendent said it was important to get back into a routine as soon as possible. The office is still a mess, but the superintendent said it was important to get back into a routine as soon as possible.
"Everybody just sort of came together and helped each other out. It's a blessing," said storm victim Mike Dollard. "Everybody just sort of came together and helped each other out. It's a blessing," said storm victim Mike Dollard.
A neighbor's trailer, which ended up on top of Dollard's house, was moved Sunday. Remarkably, they can still live in the house. A neighbor's trailer, which ended up on top of Dollard's house, was moved Sunday. Remarkably, they can still live in the house.
SPAVINAW, Oklahoma -

Oklahoma volunteers are helping with the difficult task of tornado recovery in a town with only a few hundred people and few resources. They are trying to get as much done as they can in the storm damaged areas before the chance of rain Monday night and colder temperatures moving into the area.

Through the weekend, people in Spavinaw have heard the steady sound of heavy equipment, the constant buzz of chainsaws. But listen closely and you'll hear the sound of a sense of normalcy returning.

After only two missed days, students are back in school. The office is still a mess, but the superintendent said it was important to get back into a routine as soon as possible.

4/18/2013 Related Story: Storm Damages School, Homes In Spavinaw

"It helps the parents to get them back in school. It allows them time away from the kids to take care of some stuff they need to take care of, and the kids were excited," said Superintendent Larry Larmon.

Restoration crews have worked all weekend at the school. Really, just about everyone has worked all weekend, including Mike Dollard.

"Everybody just sort of came together and helped each other out. It's a blessing," said storm victim Mike Dollard.

A neighbor's trailer, which ended up on top of Dollard's house, was moved Sunday. Remarkably, they can still live in the house.

"It's livable. We're going to put the roof back up there, where it knocked that hole in it, and carry on," Dollard said.

Jim Winn had only been Spavinaw's mayor for a few days when the tornado hit the town of 410 people. Pryor has sent city crews to help with cleanup.

"We don't have any kind of equipment in town to compare to even try to do something like this. It's just a blessing," Winn said.

Pryor Mayor Jimmy Trammell, who has gone through 11 disasters over the years with his city, is helping Spavinaw leaders navigate through the aftermath, including working with FEMA.

4/18/2013 Related Story: Spavinaw Residents Survey Aftermath Of Early Morning Tornado

Winn said the kindness of others is overwhelming.

"It just makes you feel good and proud of your fellow mankind," he said.

Back at Mike Dollards' home, despite the damage, they say they're grateful.

"I'm thankful all my family came out all okay and everybody else did, too, in the neighborhood," said Spavinaw resident Cheyenne Dorr.

Amongst the rubble, they found an American flag, which they now fly proudly on their storm damaged home, as they and so many others work to recover.

"She's still in good shape, let her fly!" Dollard said.

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