Former FOX28 employee dealing with devastation in OK - Fox 28: South Bend, Elkhart IN News, Weather, Sports

Former FOX28 employee dealing with devastation in OK


So many of us have been keeping an eye on Oklahoma, the tornadoes, and the tragedy.

A former Fox 28 employee has been, in many ways, right in the heart of this story all day.

Former Fox 28 Meteorologist Ken Garcia is now the Communications Director for the Red Cross in that Oklahoma region. His fiance, also a former Fox 28 producer Schnee Garett, is a news producer there.

Ken has been representing the Red Cross in interviews with the national media all day and we caught up with him tonight to ask what it's been like.

He said that he and his fiance are doing ok, on a personal level.

"You know we're doing very well. Schnee was luckily at home at the time in Edmond, OK, which was north of where the tornado was. I was actually in my office in Oklahoma City where the tornado was. The city of Moore is just to the south of Oklahoma City, so it was less than 10 miles away. The tornado sirens were going off in Oklahoma City and so we had to go into our shelter here in the building," Garcia said.

Garcia's role as a Red Cross Spokesman has him communicating with media all over the country and he's gone through a lot of training, but can one ever be prepared for a day like this?

He says that the Red Cross is always about preparedness. "We always want to make sure that we're prepared and we knew were going to have sever weather. Did we think we were going to have a tornado like this? No. It was truly devastating. You see the aerial video now and it's hard to watch."

Garcia's weather background and what he did at Fox28 helped with what he dealt with today in Oklahoma.

"I knew what was going on with the weather. Schnee was calling me, freaking out. 'Oh my goodness, is it coming?' I said, 'You're fine, the air is dry where you are. You're going to be ok.'"

We wanted to know how he and his co workers were dealing with the situation on a personal level. In the Red Cross office, there are a lot of people from throughout that area- Oklahoma City; Norman, OK, and the town of Moore, where the tornado hit.

"Some of my coworkers were in my office and watching the news and they were saying, 'I've got Bible Club members that live there.' One of our other volunteers couldn't get in contact with her family. It hit us very hard. I'll admit, I got very emotional, just all the overwhelmingness of what was going on. You see the devastation. I'll admit, I teared up a little bit. It's the first time,I've ever seen something like this and have been that close to it," Garcia says.

We'll stay in touch with Ken in the days to come and keep you updated on his efforts to keep others informed about the Red Cross effort underway in Oklahoma.

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