Storm Brings Both Good and Bad to Hennessey

Clean-up for the devastating storm that struck Hennessey on August 13th at about 11pm is wrapping up this week. A contractor was hired by the town to pick up limbs on Monday, August 21st for those inside town limits.  Residents were busy repairing roofs, damaged structures were being torn down, and both Pioneer and OG&E could be seen around town wrapping up work.  

During the event there was a clear divide in town. Those that had power, and those that did not. Those that did not such as Roosters lost all of their food inventory and were closed for several days. Then there were the ones that had power like Casa Teja on Main Street that were very busy. Flor Velasco, owner of Casa Teja, said, “It has been crazy here, it started at 11am and we were very busy until we closed at 8pm for several days.”

Diane Garrison, owner of Garrison Lumber said, “We were busier than normal with people needing building supplies.” 


At the peak, Monday through Thursday, dozens of crews converged on Hennessey to make repairs. Many of the power line contractors were from as far away as Illinois. They all joined with OG&E to stand up the 50 plus utility poles that were damaged. All of these crews needed to eat and a place to stay. The manager of the Hennessey Sleep Inn Hotel reported that they were full to capacity and turning people away at one point.  Golden Chick owner, Tony Blackburn said, “We were very busy, that extra money just went to making repairs.”  

Blackburn told All About Hennessey that the storm damaged his freezer and it risked losing all of his frozen inventory.  Blackburn said, “If it wasn’t for Tim Taylor at 4Ts Family Market allowing us to store our frozen foods until we could make repairs, we would have lost everything.”

The town officials and emergency services teams meet on Tuesday night for a debriefing to go over what worked and what needs work in the event something like this happens again.