The Edmond Sun

Local News

May 23, 2013

Oklahoma National Guard coordinates tornado relief support

MOORE — Oklahoma National Guard members, who work side-by-side with local responders to aid in recovery efforts during domestic operations such as the May 20 tornado that tore through Oklahoma City and Moore, are given their tasks through the Guard's Joint Operations Center.

The JOC, located in the Guard's Joint Force Headquarters in Oklahoma City, is primarily responsible for the collection, dissemination and tracking of information to increase the situational awareness for leadership as well as the National Guard Bureau, said Lt. Col. Hiram Tabler, the director of military support for Oklahoma's Joint Force Headquarters.

Once an incident has occurred, first responders will arrive on scene and use their resources to carry out their mission. If more resources are needed, the State Office of Emergency Management is alerted. The state will contact the JOC with information pertaining to requested assets. The JOC will then make vital decisions to begin tasking Guard members with specific jobs and goals.

Thus far, the JOC has tasked aviation support overall situational awareness; a military liaison on the ground; Air National Guard security forces and air support operations squadron; civil support teams to open military communications and command posts; and search and rescue teams to support civilian agencies on the ground, said Tabler.

The JOC also tasked the National Guard response force and the quick reaction force to aid in the initial recovery, he said.

“We’re here to support the first responders with whatever they need,” said Tabler.

The JOC has several elements including the message center where information is collected; the Common Operating Picture manager, who displays information centrally and disseminates it to the appropriate areas; and the battle captain, who directs and coordinates events.

All of this tasking is done through interactive computer programs that allow the JOC to send and receive real-time, current information.

There are approximately 230 Guard members on state active duty orders including those on site as well as a support element at JFHQ.

The JOC's main on-site command post is located at the Target store on 19th Street and Telephone Road in Moore. However, there are two additional command sections in Moore and Oklahoma City, representing both jurisdictions in the tornado's path.  

Major Gene Mastin is in charge of the on-site command. He said the communication link in the field is important because they are essentially the eyes and ears for the command.

“What we’ve had here in this tornado event is several impassible roads,” Mastin said. “By having a unit with the ability to communicate situations like that, it’s enabled us to maintain our freedom of movement as well as accomplish our mission.”

The JOC operates daily on a smaller capacity, but is normally able to prepare for an incident such as weather, said Tabler. In the case of the tornado, the JOC was able to increase manning in JFHQ ahead of time.

“We start leaning forward, especially with weather," he said.

This ability to change illustrates an important characteristic of the JOC — its flexibility in a time of disaster.

“We expand and grow as the incident expands and grows,” Tabler said.

Direct link to the video package:

Text Only
Local News
  • Boston 1 Arcadia man, 80, prepares for 111th marathon

    A year ago, Arcadia resident Tom Briggs was well into the Boston Marathon course when he heard runners nearby talking about an incident up ahead.

    April 19, 2014 3 Photos

  • Anne Josette Hill Police seek teen last seen in Edmond-north OKC area

    The family of a missing teenage girl made a plea to the public Friday to help them find the Casady honors student.

    April 19, 2014 2 Photos

  • 4-19 Calendar

    For information about Edmond senior programs, stop by and pick up a monthly calendar, check out the website at or call 216-7600. Lunch is served at 11:30 a.m. and reservations are needed a day in advance by 11 a.m. For lunch reservations, call 330-6293 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

    April 19, 2014

  • UCO plans Earth Day Fair

    The University of Central Oklahoma invites the community to celebrate sustainability with its Earth Day Fair from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. April 22 in locations throughout Central’s campus.
    The fair kicks off at 10 a.m. around Broncho Lake with exhibitions from local businesses, state agencies and student organizations. Visitors will have the opportunity to learn about its environmental mission and message.

    April 19, 2014

  • UCO School of Music closes semester with concert series

    The University of Central Oklahoma School of Music will wrap up its instrumental performance season with three concerts featuring Central students April 29 through May 1 at Mitchell Hall Theater located on the UCO campus.    

    April 19, 2014

  • Fine Arts 1 Auction benefits Fine Arts Institute

    The Spring Sampler dinner and auction event April 12 at Oak Tree Country Club benefitted the Fine Arts Institute of Edmond.

    April 18, 2014 4 Photos

  • Kaiser joins Thunder ownership group

    Tulsa businessman George B. Kaiser has been approved by the NBA Board of Governors as a new partner in The Professional Basketball Club LLC, which owns the Oklahoma City Thunder. Thunder Chairman and CEO Clayton I. Bennett made the announcement Friday. Kaiser is purchasing the ownership interest of Tom L. Ward.
    “We are honored to welcome George Kaiser as a member of the ownership group of the Oklahoma City Thunder,” Bennett said. “George is a well-respected and important Oklahoma business leader, as well as one of the state and nation’s top philanthropists. His commitment to successful business and community leadership is in true alignment with that of the Thunder.
    “I also appreciate the commitment and leadership provided by Tom Ward as a member of our ownership group from the beginning,” Bennett added.

    April 18, 2014

  • Literally, books come to life for club

    When some of the women at Touchmark at Coffee Creek got together to form a book club, they didn’t know it would be so much fun and become such an important part of their lives.
    The group of about a dozen residents gets together monthly to not only discuss the assigned novel, memoir or classic, but also to immerse themselves in the setting and culture of the book. There is no limit to their creativity.

    April 18, 2014

  • pink.jpg Local children win Edmond Sun Easter coloring contest

    Two local children were named winners of The Edmond Sun’s Easter coloring contest. At left, Madsion Porter, 4, daughter of Tracy Porter, won a princess Easter basket, which included a tiara, tea set, stuffed bunny rabbit and chocolate rabbit. At right, BriAnna Harbaugh, 9, daughter of Leslie Haubaugh, won a Hello Kitty Easter basket, containing art supplies, a Hello Kitty stuffed animal and a chocolate bunny.  The families also received a three-month subscription to The Edmond Sun. For your own subscription to The Edmond Sun, visit, call 341-2121, or visit 123 S. Broadway.

    April 18, 2014 2 Photos

  • jc_HarveySparks.jpg Pastor seeks congressional seat

    Working in the Congressional 1st District office of Congressman Jim Bridenstine was an eye opener for Harvey Sparks, he said. His analytical exposure to Congress has sparked his drive to run for the Congressional 5th District of Oklahoma, said Sparks, R-Oklahoma City.
    Sparks has been a pastor for the majority of his professional life. Sixteen months ago, he was asked by 1st District Congressman Jim Bridenstine to come work in his Washington, D.C., office. He and his wife, Jennifer, have three daughters and a son, ages 10-3.

    April 18, 2014 1 Photo

Featured Ads
NDN Video
Jabari Parker's Top 5 Plays From Duke Career Kourtney Kardashian Is a Bikini Babe More Manpower Than Ever Expected At 4/20 Rally Debunk'd: Miley Cyrus AIDS, Cheeseburgers Cause Cancer, Military Warning Bill Previewing the NBA playoffs Raw: Orthodox Christians Observe Easter Rite My name is Cocaine Raw: Space X Launches to Space Station Lohan Gets Candid About Her Sex List The 2014 New York Auto Show Meet Johnny Manziel's New Girlfriend Chelsea Clinton Announces Pregnancy Funny: Celebrating Easter with Martha Stewart and Friends Man Accuses 'X-Men' Director Bryan Singer of Sexually Abusing Him As a Teenager Man hit with $525 federal fine after he doesn't pay for soda refill Lea Michele & Naya Rivera Feuding? Jabari Parker declares for the NBA draft Singing Nun Belts Out Cyndi Lauper New West, Texas Explosion Video Swim Daily, Throwback Thursday

Do you agree with a state budget proposal that takes some funds away from road and bridge projects to ramp up education funding by $29.85 million per year until schools are receiving $600 million more a year than they are now? In years in which 1 percent revenue growth does not occur in the general fund, the transfer would not take place.

     View Results