Storms Demolish Canadian Valley Tech Center

Saturday, June 1st 2013, 9:59 pm
By: News 9

Winds from Friday night's tornado were so strong that it ripped through the Canadian Valley Technology Center leaving it and many parts of Canadian County destroyed.

While Power lines split in half and major roads off Highway 66 sank underwater, a campus that normally sees 1,200 people daily is left vacant and shattered. Students in class at the technology center rode the storm out in an underground shelter.

"All the glass along the side of the cafeteria came blowing in," said Alan Joy, a student. "We could see all the debris and everything, and we all moved into a smaller room so that we wouldn't get hurt."

Joy was in the last day of his ammunition reloading class. He made it out of the building without a scratch, but his car was totaled.

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"It went about 150 to 200 yards right across the parking lot and landed right in front of the sign and flipped it upside down," Joy said.

Planes from the center's aviation school are smashed and many parts inside the buildings are flooded.

"This is a catastrophic, multi, multi-million dollar loss here," said Greg Winters, Superintendent of Canadian Valley Tech Center. "By the time I got here, looks like somebody took a big lawn mower and mowed this thing down."

The center plans to rebuild in the same location. All classes are canceled next week, and students and staff are just happy to be alive.

"It was a bunch of old men in the class anyway, and we were all pretty calm and collected," Joy said. "We were just kind of looking around and thanking the Lord that we're all still here."