Oklahomans Take A Look Back At 1980 Heat Record

Friday, August 19th 2011, 6:40 pm
By: News 9

Darren Brown, News 9

OKLAHOMA CITY -- We are just one day away from a record breaker. Triple digit heat is forecasted for Saturday and if that happens, we will tie the record of 50 hundred degree days.

That was set back in 1980.

And, that got us all thinking, what were things like back then?

We sometimes refer to heat as meaning something good. A basketball player has the hot hand; a winning poker player is on fire. We had our own hot streak here in Oklahoma a few years back. Allow me to take you back to summer 1980.

It was a much, much different time back then. How different you ask? Well…

There was no Internet, and even if there had been, there were no smart phones or laptops to view it on. There was no such thing as a flat screen TV, and instead of arguing over Obama care, the country was arguing over Reaganomics.

Odell Burton remembers that summer. He had just started working here at the Lincoln Park Senior Center the year before.

"I know how hot it was," Burton says.

Burton says he can't remember how much gas was back then, but he knows it was much cheaper.

Gary Ryan drives a van for the center, but back in 1980 he worked for a trucking company, outside mostly.

"I used to help the drivers out on the dock when they'd come in and unload and it was just a miserable, miserable summer," Ryan says. "I really don't remember it being all that bad though."

Our own Gary England covered other weather events that year, like the Mount Saint Helen's eruption. But he covered his share of Oklahoma sun as well.

Gary Ryan was hot back then.

"It was just a miserable summer," Ryan says.

And he's still warm, but here's hoping that he, and you, can make this hot stretch a little more bearable.

8/19/2011 Related Story: Oklahoma City On Verge Of Hot Temperature Record.