The Field House at Little Axe High School caught fire around 8 p.m. Monday. The school and student athletes are having to recover from this loss.
“The worst thoughts creeped in,” said Mikeem Fool, a senior football player. “No football season. And that was devastating to think about.”
Their locker room inside Field House is a total loss. Helmets, jerseys, cleats and other gear are burnt to ashes.
“It’s more than just a field house. It’s almost like a second home for most of us," Brandon Park, a junior football player, said. "I know most of us don’t end up leaving that place until seven o’clock at night.”
In the day after the fire, their fear of not playing this season is gone as donations are pouring in from all around, especially from other football teams.
“All I’m doing is fielding calls of ‘How can we help?’” Principal Barry Thomas said.
The generosity and support moved him to tears.
“After a while, it hits you. I’ve been dealing with this for hours, you know, but Lexington, who we open against, is sending pads over today,” Thomas said.
Moore, Noble, and Bishop McGuiness are also schools lending helmets, pads, cleats and other gear to the team. This means the football players will be able to practice and play this season.
"Fantastic. It’s a huge relief that we’re going to be able to play football,” Fool said.
Those wishing to donate to the recovery efforts can do so by bringing the donation to the central office or, if they prefer, there is a donations account set up at First National Bank of Midwest City for the Little Axe Public Schools Fieldhouse Fire Recovery.
Cleats For Kids are also organizing collection drives for the Indians. They're looking to receive cleats of all sizes, socks, practice pants, athletic shorts and shirts, compression shorts and shirts, and tennis shoes. Donations can be taken to their office at 720 W. Wilshire, Suite 120, in Oklahoma City. Information about monetary donations can be found at their website.
Just one day after the fire, they are still practicing. On Thursday, the boys will play their last scrimmage.
On Sept. 1, they will play their home opener against Lexington, a team that is being so generous to Little Axe during this tough time.
“Even though we’re out here competing against each other, we all love the game of football,” Fool said.
Little Axe High School will rebuild the inside of the Field House.
The Norman Fire Department is investigating it as an accidental fire that damaged somewhere between $50,000 & $80,000. On Monday, Little Axe Volunteer Fire Department and EMSSTAT also responded to the fire.