Transcript for Moore, Oklahoma, Schools Hit Hard by Tornado
learned just a short time ago, that in some parts of this community, that tornado surpassed 200 miles per hour. Look over my shoulder tonight because this is what that does. Home after home obliterated here. This neighborhood that we're standing in, looks like so many that we drove through today. Two direct hits on elementary schools here today. At one school, a miracle. At the other, they were still hoping for a miracle today. Oh, my god! Reporter: Tonight as we learned that monstrous tornado was stronger than first thought. A promise from authorities, to search every home here three times before giving up. Just before we came on the air, another visit to the home right here beside us. And at the plaza towers elementary school, they're still searching. Though authorities won't say for sure if they believe there are any children still inside. But there's still hope here, and there are still tears. New images of those first reunions. This mother reunited with her son who's been sobbing in the arms of his teacher, waiting for her. A thank you from mom, and a proud teacher answers. He was so good. Reporter: One of the happy endings here. In so much chaos. This man lifting up a tearful boy to console him. And there was this father as panicked as any parent would be. She's out? And this little girl, who said she just wouldn't let go of that desk. I was so afraid that I was hanging on to one of the desks. And then, um, I fell back, and all the dirt that got in my eyes and I ll. Reporter: The countless heroes, the teachers determined to make sure their students would make it home to their parents. All fifth graders right here! Reporter: Tonight a clearer picture of the moments before the tornado took aim at two different schools. At briarwood elementary, they all got out. Cindy lowe teaches first grade. She opened her door and saw the tornado come. You saw it am canning right at you? Saw it am canning by the school. Ran over and got on top of the kids. Said this is not a drill. Reporter: One of those children, her own son. Her body on top of them and several others as they cried for their moms. They had desks and chairs and tables covering them. Reporter: And teacher? Nd teacher. Reporter: Just across the way, sherry urged her first graders to use their backpacks as shields. They were covering their heads with their backpacks. Reporter: What were the kids saying during all this? I want my mom. Reporter: Their school is destroyed too. How did all the children there get out when some of the children at plaza towers did not? They believe it was constructed differently. Each grade organized into pods, a few classrooms in each building. At the center of those buildings an opening to the outdoors. When everything collapsed, they were able to crawl out through the open area in the middle, passing the children over the rubble. Unlike plaza towers elementary, more traditional with a long line of classrooms under one roof. T collapsed, the roof and walls piling on top of one another, no opening in the middle, like those pods. Tonight as they continue to search there, an honest fire chief. No survivor has been found recently, in the last few hours. Reporter: But tonight a prayer for the teachers at the other school. Two teachers at that school, I can't even imagine not being able to give those kids back to their parents that brought them to me that morning. Reporter: Tonight that teacher thinking about all those other teachers at the other school. And we learned from those two teachers earlier today, diane, that there were no safe rooms in either of those schools. When authorities were asked about that late today, they acknowledged that there simply isn't the funding to put safe rooms in every school. Acknowledging those two schools were among those that were not funded. A lot of questions to come on
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