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Methodist Children's Home celebrates 100 years of service

Circle of Care opened up the gates of the Methodist Children's Home Saturday to celebrate 100 years (KTUL).

TAHLEQUAH, Okla. (KTUL) -- Circle of Care opened up the gates of the Methodist Children's Home Saturday to celebrate 100 years.

For a century, countless children have called the Methodist Children’s Home, home.

Roger Yandell is one of them.

“This place has made me who I am today, so without this place, I wouldn’t be me,” he said.

Yandell lived there from 1967 to 1974, and said it wasn’t always happy memories.

“At first it was hard,” he said. “Because you miss your parents. There were nights you would lay in bed and cry.”

He stayed at the home with his two brothers. Frank Durossette is one of them.

“At least we were together,” said Durossette. “We never separated. We went to school. We got an education, something we wouldn’t have if we wouldn’t have been here.”

The trio still had questions during their time at the home.

“You never really understand why you were here,” said Yandell. “We never got those answers and over time you just quit asking and you just became a kid.”

A kid who began to meet new people like Eugene Word. He stayed at the home from 1968 to 1973.

“Roger was my best friend,” Word said. “We grew up together. We did everything.”

Thinking back, Word can’t believe how much has changed before and after getting to the home.

“Hated it,” he said. "Didn’t want to be here, until I got here. We didn’t know what we had until we left. I probably would have been in a lot of trouble if I had stayed on the street where I was, and I was in a lot of trouble before I came here.”

Today, Yandell continues to give back to the home by working there.

“Wow,” he said. “What a career move. If I could have done this years ago, this is where I would have been probably for 30 or 40 years. I get to come back to a place that made me and I don’t know how many people in the world get that chance.”

Although the Methodist Children’s Home is no longer an orphanage, the home continues to serve Oklahoma’s children through Preparation for Adult Living for youth ages 16 to 24 and campus-based foster care.

Right now, they are in need of families to live on campus and be willing to foster siblings or teenagers in the program.

To apply call Keith Howard at 918-456-6166.

Circle of Care's mission is to provide Christian help, healing and hope to children and families in crisis to ensure a safe, healthy and spiritual future.

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