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Kilowatt F JULY 2013 INSIDE YOUR CO-OP


A Touchstone Energy Cooperative


Kiwash Electric


Cooperative, Inc. Providing the service


that lights up your life.


Office Location PO Box 100


120 W. 1st Street


Cordell, Oklahoma (888) 832-3362


www.kiwash.coop


Find us on Facebook Staff


Dennis Krueger manager


Wendy Putman director of finance


Lisa Willard director of


communications Roy Dewees


director of operations


Board of Trustees officers


Jack Sawatzky president


Robert Travis vice president


Virginia Walker sec.-treasurer


John Schaufele


asst. sec.-treasurer directors


Ralph Cunningham Leslie Hinds Rex Eagan


F From Disaster to Discovery Oklahomans show their true character in the midst of tragedy


olks, I’m in my 39th year of being an Oklahoma transplant. My secondary education was in Indiana


with college training in New Mexico, yet, my career has been right here in Oklahoma. I’ve been asked many times why I chose to live in Oklahoma and my comic line is always the same, “I grew up in Indiana, graduated college in New Mexico was married three days after that. I ran out of money in Oklahoma and stayed.”


the storm. When the El Reno-to- Norman tornado ripped through on the last day of May; Johnny Jones, Mark Lawson, Kyle Eldridge and Brad Claussen gave up their weekend to assist in electric line restoration northeast of Norman. These men


"One clear lesson is that courage is the most necessary ingredient in heroism, more than training, strength or talent."


Yes, Oklahoma has its share of selfish naysayers; but on the whole, Oklahomans have a true spirit of “commitment to community,” along with cooperation and compassion when it comes to hardships. I personally felt this spirit when my son passed away at an early age. I have seen Oklahomans call-to-arms in the local Cordell tornado. I have watched my fellow workers volunteer at a drop of the hat to help others in times of disasters.


Three great examples of this commitment to community followed the deadly EF5 tornado in Moore. Mark Lawson, Kiwash Electric Cooperative lineman and a volunteer fireman in Bessie, spent time on one of the many shifts that searched the Plaza Towers Elementary School for children in Moore. The Kiwash Electric construction crew Mike Miller, Chris Bowles, Clint Christensen, Tyler Mitchell, and Brandon Rogers, volunteered and spent three and a half days restoring power for Oklahoma Electric Cooperative in the city of Moore immediately following


volunteered to tread into the inner sanctum of the storm’s path, and worked as first responders long before cleanup started. This is true commitment to community.


I believe others across the U.S. see this commitment by Oklahomans. NBC Nightly News anchor Brian Williams was speaking to Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin about the response of Oklahomans to the storms. “I watched your entire briefing today," Williams said. "You had all heads of state departments including churches and conferences of churches. You have almost a faith-based FEMA here, in addition to FEMA. The first thing to learn about Oklahoma often is it’s a very religious state, and that comes in critically right now for a lot of these people.”


Later in the same broadcast another NBC reporter, Harry Smith, said “If you’re waiting for the government, you’re going to be in for an awful long wait, but the Baptist men, they are going to get it done tomorrow (as they are already delivering food on the street).”


We call it the “Oklahoma Standard” and the world viewed this commitment to community live and in color as it unfolded. Mother Nature gave us her worst, we gave her our best: Teachers and day care workers throwing their bodies over children to shield them from the devastation, college students volunteering, children emptying their piggy banks, corporate citizens championing relief efforts, and there, in the midst of the debris piles, Kiwash employees lending a hand.


It's been said that a true test of character is not whether you get knocked down, but if you get back up again. Time and time again, Oklahomans continue to teach us lessons from such devastating occurrences. One clear lesson is that courage is the most necessary ingredient in heroism, more than training, strength or talent.


Some may criticize my decision to send employees to tornado-ridden Moore and Norman instead of to work at Kiwash Electric, but most will applaud the efforts of these employees.


President Theodore Roosevelt once commented on human character, “I care not what others think of what I do, but I care very much about what I do!” I am proud to serve the Kiwash members in western Oklahoma, delighted to work with caring individuals and glad to make Oklahoma my home.


May God continue to bless us.


By Dennis Krueger general manager


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