When the Moore Medical Center took a "direct hit" from Monday's devastating tornado, everyone who remained in the building was spared from injury. Among the 30 patients and staffers in that group was one incredibly lucky newborn, delivered only an hour prior to impact. As "Politics Nation" reports, it was nurse Cheryl Stoepker's heroic efforts that saved the infant's life.
"We were very well-prepared and knew what we needed to do to get our patients to safety," Stoepker told Al Sharpton in an interview. She had just delivered the baby, and explained the steps she took to get both Mom and baby from their delivery room to a safe spot in the center of the hospital, where an additional 250 -300 residents were taking cover. She continued, "The baby wasn't even an hour old, didn't even have a diaper on at that point, but Mom and I held the baby and prayed and made it through."
Even though all of the patients survived, Moore Medical Center spokesperson Kelly Wells confirmed to area news station KOCO the hospital was "pretty much destroyed." Their emergency department manager, Nick Stremble, told NPR's Shots blog more about what it was like to be inside the building when the tornado touched down:
"I could see all the folks being hit with the wind that was coming through the building, and the people that were kind of along the wall just kind of starting to tumble and roll and be pushed down the hall. And they all kind of ended up in a pile, down in front of another set of doors."
Stoepker and her colleagues have all be transferred to other branches of Norman Regional Health System, of which Moore Medical Center was a part.