Kansas Gas steps up to replace after prom prizes

Hannah Brown
Kansas Gas Service representatives came to Kiowa County High School last week with a special presentation of a check for the amount needed to pay for replacing After Prom prizes that had been stolen from the After Prom committee.

There might no longer be a 2020 Prom in the future for Kiowa County’s high school students, due to school and activity cancellations because of coronavirus concerns, but After Prom Party prizes have been secured. Community donors and Kansas Gas Service made sure of that.

The Kiowa County Sheriff's Office arrested two suspects in relation to the stolen after prom prizes on March 7, just two weeks after the prizes were taken from a storage unit in Kiowa County.

Ryan Patrick McPhail Clark, 33, of Cimarron and Courtney Windholz, 19, Bucklin, were taken into custody in connection to the crime.

The Kiowa County Sheriff's Office identified several items from the storage unit as well as other items that were reported stolen from Kansas and Oklahoma. Clark and Windholz were charged with burglary to a non-dwelling, theft and criminal damage.

All suspects are presumed innocent until proven guilty.

According to Cyndee Tuttle, After Prom Committee chairperson, no prizes reclaimed were usable.

“They were all been damaged in some way,” Tuttle said. “There was no way we could use any of them.”

Along with community donations, Kansas Gas Service stepped up and wrote a check to the Kiowa County group for the remaining balance to purchase all new prizes for the after prom event. It remains to be seen if Prom 2020 will go on as planned, due to coronavirus concerns.

If it does, however, Kiowa County High School students can be assured they will be lucky recipients of party prizes if they attend the annual After Prom event, thanks to donors like Kansas Gas Service.

Kansas Gas Service is a division of ONE Gas, one of the largest natural gas distribution companies in the United States with more than 3,600 employees in Oklahoma, Kansas and Texas.

Their mission is to deliver natural gas for a better tomorrow, and they do that every day for more than 2.2 million customers in communities throughout many service areas.

“We believe that serving our customers goes beyond providing natural gas service. That’s why our employees are committed to strengthening our communities through charitable giving and volunteerism,” said a Kansas Gas Service spokesperson. “We are happy to be able to give to the Kiowa County High School After Prom Committee to assure their students have a safe alternative on prom night.”