Volunteers Meet To Repair Rain-Damaged Bridge

Wednesday, March 21st 2012, 6:54 pm
By: News 9

Volunteer contractors met up Wednesday to repair a bridge that washed away in Monday's heavy rains.

Dozens of families in the southeast Oklahoma City neighborhood were left stranded after the rains washed away the only bridge connecting their neighborhood to essential services

The contractors say that normally this kind of repair would cost about $30,000, but they're doing it all for free. That's great news for the residents, because one local homeowner told News 9 that "Maintenance of the road is the responsibility of a local homeowners' association, but members say they didn't have the money to fix the road or replace the washed out bridge."

"We were worried what we'd do if an emergency happened," stranded neighbor, Bill Rickman said.

The nearly 100 residents had been stuck since Monday, when the storms struck.

"We needed to get groceries before all this," Brian Pierson says his family is running low on groceries.

"We don't have to worry about that anymore," Rickman said.

3/20/2012 Related Story: Contractors To Fix Rain-Damaged Bridge In SW OKC For Free

"It's amazing absolutely amazing," Pierson said. "They do not know us and they dipped into their own pockets to come here and just doing this out of generosity."

Rickman and his neighbors got a front row seat to watch the volunteer workers who stepped up and dug in to help out.

While they waited, neighbors also joked about who would be the first to go across and where they're going first.  

"Who's gonna be first going to be the first one to cross the bridge?" Rickman laughed. "We'll have to flip a coin."

Neighbors made sure to keep the crews fed and area churches brought food and dry socks for everyone.

The conversation turned to how they will thank the crews when they can go across.

"Cheer for the workers," said 9-year-old Izabel Morgan.

"We're thinking about naming the bridge or creek after all these people here to help," Pierson said.

Since the workers want to remain anonymous, Dion Brooks has an idea for the bridge name.

"Thought about maybe ‘Volunteer'," he said. "That's all that came and no one wants to take credit for it so, "Volunteer'."

The contractors hope others would do the same if they were the ones stuck and pass on the Oklahoma goodwill.

3/20/2012 Related Story: SE OKC Community Struggles To Repair Rain-Damaged Bridge