STRINGTOWN, Okla. -- On May 5, 2019, Chief of Security John Swain, Training Officer David Mauk and Sgt. Tamblyn Klepper were busy performing their duties at Mack Alford Correctional Center when they were stunned by a loud explosion. While most people would have run from such a terrifying sound, they ran toward it, wanting to help anyone near it.
They quickly discovered a fire had ignited at the gas pumps, and a delivery truck parked next to it was engulfed in flames. They ran toward the fire to check on any employees, inmates or civilians who may have been injured. They witnessed the truck driver fleeing the scene appearing unharmed, and quickly accounted for staff and inmates in the area.
As they determined no one was hurt, a second and then third explosion rocked the area, blowing scrap metal and burning debris hundreds of yards away – even reaching US 69. Quickly, they sought cover, crawling under vehicles and running behind nearby buildings. Fortunately, no one was injured.
On that day, they faced a potentially deadly situation and exceeded all expectations by risking their own safety to help others potentially injured in the blast and resulting fire.