June 30–Quinton Public Schools’ elementary school students will begin the upcoming school year with brand new playground equipment.
QPS received donations from Farmer’s State Bank and Patterson-UTI Drilling, Co. to build the new playground, along with a new chain-link fence, for its elementary school students ages pre-K through sixth grade to enjoy for many years to come.
“Our playground has been in bad shape for a long time now,” QPS Superintendent Stacey Henderson said. “We started trying to raise the money for a new playground about a year ago.”
Henderson said Farmer’s State Bank donated $20,000 toward the project and Patterson-UTI donated the remaining $30,250 needed to complete the project.
“Patterson wanted to give back to our community,” Henderson said. “They really appreciated our community’s hospitality after the recent tragedy they had during the oil well explosion.”
The explosion occurred on Jan. 22 at the Patterson 219 rig in Quinton, which killed five workers — Matt Smith, 29, of McAlester, Oklahoma; Josh Ray, 35, of Fort Worth, Texas; Cody Risk, 26, of Wellington, Colorado; Parker Waldridge, 60, of Crescent, Oklahoma; and Roger Cunningham, 55, of Seminole, Oklahoma.
In a letter addressed to Henderson, Patterson-UTI President Mike Holcomb stated the following:
“Let me first start by stating how appreciative we are for the hospitality and kindness the community of Quinton, Oklahoma showed all of us at Patterson-UTI Drilling following the well fire on Rig 219. We could have never expected the continuous acts of kindness and service that all of your town showed our employees and their families during this difficult time. The people of Quinton truly embody the spirit of the great state of Oklahoma and all of you are to be commended for your selflessness and generosity.”
Henderson said the playground has been installed between the main school building and the gymnasium and will be ready for children to enjoy when school starts back.
“I know our kids are going to be so excited about it,” Henderson said. “It is so important for young kids to play together. It teaches them social and physical skills and it is really important for them to have a great place to play to let that energy out so they can go back into the classroom and focus.”
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