Thirty-six tornado warnings sounded through Moore, Oklahoma. Within 16 minutes, the twister touched down. Within an hour, the town was destroyed.
The National Weather Service have now officially declared the tornado that hit Moore, Oklahoma on Monday as an EF-5, the highest category, which is given when wind speeds are estimated to be over 200 mph. The current estimate for this tornado is 200-210 mph.
Latest estimates are that 24 people have died, although this figure may rise.
While Monday’s deadly tornado aimed at residents of Moore, OK, it also hit many animals as well.
The Orr Family Farm and Celestial Acres Training Center lies inside the 17-mile disaster-zone that the 1.3 mile-wide twister created.
Celestial Acres had four barns and a total of several hundred stalls. Only one of those barns, on the north side of the five-furlong training track, was left standing after the storm. The facilities also included several paddocks and an 85- by 200-foot arena. The training center was believed to be fairly full, and in addition to Thoroughbreds, the facility housed mainly Quarter Horses at the time. (DRF)
Celestial Acres also frequently consigns yearlings at the Oklahoma Thoroughbred sales. Over the years, the operation has been represented as breeder of several winners at Remington and Lone Star Parks, including 2005 stakes victor High Pioneer.
In the 1990s, stallions At the Threshold and Proper Reality stood at Celestial Acres. (BloodHorse.com)
Celestial Acres is one of two businesses on a 160-acre tract of land owned by Dr. Glenn Orr and his son, Tom, said Tony Vann. The other business is Orr Family Farm, a popular tourist attraction that features a petting zoo, trains and a zipline. (DRF)
Tom Orr is a longtime owner who has horses in training at Lone Star Park.
“I tried to let some of the horses get loose and
free out of their stalls so they’d have a chance.”
- Lando Hite, an employee of the Orr Family, told KFOR
Sadly, more than 100 horses are feared dead. “Right now we still don’t have any specific numbers [on how many horses have died],” Tony Vann, president of Vann & Associates, the public relations firm that represents the Oklahoma City area farm, told BloodHorse.com.
You Can Help
The Thoroughbred Racing Association of Oklahoma (TRAO) and Oklahoma Quarter Horse Racing Association (OQHRA) have jointly announced the creation of a benevolence account for horsemen impacted by the storms.
This devastating news has hit us hard. We have to help. It’s not much, but we are donating to this very important cause. All donations will be distributed directly to horsemen and their families. Every dollar counts.
“There are many horsemen who have been affected by
this tragedy and have lost everything they own.”
- The TRAO and OQHRA said in a statement
Those that wish to make a donation using a credit or debit card may phone the OQHRA at (405) 216-0440. Checks should be made payable to either TRAO Benevolence Fund or OQHRA Benevolence Fund with “2013 Tornado” on the memo line.
Donations may be sent to:
Thoroughbred Racing Association of Oklahoma
2620 NW Expressway; Suite A
Oklahoma City, OK 73112
Oklahoma Quarter Horse Racing Association
P. O. Box 2907
Edmond, OK 73083
For more information, contact the TRAO at (405) 427-8753 or the OQHRA at (405) 216-0440, or visit BloodHorse.com.