Puget Sound families wait for word from Oklahoma relatives

by: Chris Legeros Updated:

PORT ORCHARD, Wash. —

When tornadoes tore through Central Oklahoma, Leslie Zupan admits she "freaked out."

The Port Orchard woman has a sister, Nicole, a niece, a
nephew and a brother in law living in Pawhuska. Zupan couldn't reach them by phone. She says it was scary not knowing whether they were hurt or whether their house was damaged in the storm. Other relatives finally relayed short Facebook messages from Nicole that she was okay.

When we reached her by phone, she said a tornado touched down just
10 miles from her home. It suffered minor damage from the wind and hail.

Scott Thompson heard good news from his relatives in Stillwater, Oklahoma. The Bonney Lake man says his sister, brother in
law and their four kids are all safe. They were all "on alert" and ready to take shelter, but it wasn't necessary. Thompson says he's concerned every time his relatives are threatened by storms. He says, "it's gut wrenching and you sit back and you worry."

Sheila Hamm also spent a day worrying at her home in Aberdeen. She's got a sister and nephew living in Central Oklahoma. They didn't hear from the nephew, Jeremiah Wirshup until he finally sent a text message telling his family he was
okay. Wirshup said he was in Moore just before a big tornado tore through that city. He decided to clear out and drove to Norman, a safe distance from the storm.