The community that surrounds McLaughlin Cemetery at Cleora has a grass roots initiative in progress to raise the funds necessary to purchase a tornado siren.  Residents in the subdivisions of Gran Tara, Red Arrow, Crace Shores, Paradise Cove, Two Tree, Woodland Shores, Amber Waves, The Vintage, The Polo Club, Reeds Point, Preston Point, Beverly Heights and a portion of Grand Lake will be protected by the installation of this siren.

The siren will be located within the gated subdivision of Gran Tara whose Board of Directors has agreed to provide electric service to the siren, insure the siren and pay for future maintenance.

Oklahoma State Climatologist Gary McManus was quoted on February 20th as saying, “Be prepared for an active storm season!  The severity of the drought did not impact our severe storm season in 2013.  We finished last year with the second highest number of tornadoes in the U.S.”

Grand Lake tornado damage

Damage in the Vintage & Woodland Shores area of Grand Lake from the May 2011 tornado. Image courtesy of http://cleorasiren.com

A portion of the area that will be protected by this siren was damaged and forever scarred by a tornado in May of 2011.  We invite readers to visit our website at http://cleorasiren.com to view several photographs of the damage. Even a “small” tornado can be devastating.

The cost of the VortexR4 warning siren, battery, pole, siren hardware, a 10 band radio and a Weather Warn activation controller is $29,550.00.  Through the determined and creative efforts of Sherry Wolf, the Chairman of the Tornado Siren Committee who resides in Gran Tara, and a bevy of hard-working, unselfish volunteers, the balance in the Siren Fund as of March 7, 2014, was $21,402.00!  The first deposit, made on January 7, 2014, only amounted to $1,125.00.

In just a two month time span, $20,277.00 was donated. In addition, not yet included in the current balance are these four items:

  • $2800 Round-Up Grant (REC)
  • $ 555 Outstanding Pledges
  • $ 500 Cherokee Nation
  • $1000 The Cresap Foundation

When these numbers are added to the balance, it totals $26,257.00!!

The balance needed to reach the final goal of $29,550.00 is a mere $3,293.00!  Now, that’s progress!!

Currently, the siren and the pole have been ordered.  The pole will be set, free of charge, by a crew from REC when it arrives.

But, the Weather Warn component of this project can only be ordered when the total goal has been reached.

Please help us to do just that.  Please help us to reach this goal.  Donations are now being taken to raise the balance of the monies needed to complete this most worthy project.  If you are able to donate, please do so.  No amount is too small.

Donations, made payable to Tornado Siren Fund, may be mailed:

c/o Gran Tara
453892 Country Club Trail
Afton, OK 74331  

Any questions regarding this project may be directed to:

Sherry Wolf at (816) 699-2118

Jack Kenney at (918) 584-9272

For the sake of convenience, they are also available to come and pick up a donation from a business or residence.