Modified: July 31, 2013 at 4:00 pm ? Published: July 30, 2013
EL RENO ? Thunder rumbling, rain pinging against the metal building and sporadic power outages at Monday's OKC West Stockyards cattle auction, were eerily reminiscent of May 31, but this time there was no tornado.
Monday's auction was the second since the business was destroyed in the EF5 tornado, said Bill Barnhart, OKC West managing partner.
The auction house opened in 1989 and takes cattle on consignment and cleans, sorts and sells them.
Thirteen people and 160 cows were on the property when the tornado came rolling through. All humans and cows survived, but the business' four buildings were demolished.
?Good Lord ordered a remodel, so we're going to remodel,? Barnhart said.
Barnhart also decided to make some improvements.
Since his employees had to find creative hiding places from the storm such as under a stairwell in the restaurant or under the cow-weighing machine, Barnhart decided to install a storm shelter in the new arena, employee Sonny Barthold said.
Improvements also included newer camera equipment to film proceedings for the online audience. The auctions are posted on the Internet in a live-stream so people at home or at work can bid on cattle.
?Bill took this on like a war and he won this war,? Barthold said. ?If you've got to go to battle, you want him on your side.?
Two of the four buildings at OKC West have been rebuilt. It was essential to rebuild the arena and feed barn in order to get back to business, Barnhart said. Until the office building and truck wash are rebuilt, offices have been temporarily moved to the back of the arena.