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Saturday, October 24, 2015, the OSU Homecoming parade and Stillwater, Oklahoma, landed in the unenviable public spotlight after this small college town experienced the tragic loss of four precious lives. Witnesses, first responders, victims, and their families, share untold stories uncovering a common thread of hope, weaving inspiration into the fabric of a community all too experienced in dealing with pain.

Named after his uncle who died in an airplane crash, author D. Scott Petty, discovered inspirational connections from the most unsettling events, in the most unsuspecting places.

Initial book profits helped fund and created awareness for the construction of the Stillwater Strong Memorial at Hall of Fame and Main Street, in Stillwater, Oklahoma.  All remaining profits will go towards the Stillwater Medical Foundation and other non-profit Stillwater organizations.

The Book



None currently scheduled


Inspired by an unforgettable interaction 25 years earlier, this story is about connecting charitable passions and a community's need. The Oklahoma State University family has experienced multiple public tragedies, and from them an undeniable culture of compassion has evolved. In “Stillwater Strong,” Petty writes about events before, during and after, the OSU Homecoming crash in 2015. This was just one of many events that put the story of survival and resilience into motion. A story that inspires making a difference and paying it forward, Stillwater Strong highlights the tight-knit community at OSU that finds light in darkness, all while defining the meaning of being “Loyal and True.”

"I believe you'll enjoy reading these inspiring stories that Scott has compiled of those who helped before, during and after our 2015 Homecoming Tragedy."

- Mike Gundy

OSU Head Football Coach

"You'll be touched by the acts of service from college students, volunteers, first responders, and so many who reached out from coast-to-coast in a time of need, proving once again, that no matter how far you go, you'll always call OSU home."

- Angela Courtin

Global Head of YouTube TV

and Originals Marketing

"The positive impact the Stillwater Strong book will have on this community and those affected will endure for years to come."

- Tom Bradley

Chief, Stillwater Fire Department

"I am blown away by the book, Stillwater Strong, Loyal and True.  Not only was it informative but it was written with terrific passion. Great, great job!"

- Gary Sparks, Architect -Stillwater Strong Memorial

"From his long-ago meeting with Rosa Parks to the Epilogue's end, Scott's engaging story of goodness and compassion is uplifting."

- Scott Hendricks

Executive Vice President,

Warner Music Group

Where to Buy


click below

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Stillwater Strong - LOYAL and TRUE is available for purchase at Chris' University Spirit, the OSU Student Store, and Bliss Books and Bindery in Stillwater, Oklahoma, or online by clicking one of their links above.


Thanks to you the sale of this book has contributed nearly $8,000 for the construction of the Stillwater Strong Memorial.  


Your generous support of Stillwater is truly appreciated.

The Crash


Oklahoma State University- home of America’s Greatest Homecoming. Every year in Stillwater, Oklahoma, thousands gather from all over to celebrate the school’s homecoming traditions. One of the biggest events during the 10-day celebration is the Sea of Orange Parade that takes place the Saturday morning of the Homecoming game. On October 24, 2015, as the annual parade came to a close, a woman drove into the crowd of spectators, killing 4 and injuring 50. Once again facing tragedy, the Stillwater community came together to unite, rebuild and restore what was lost resulting in the mantra, Stillwater Strong.

An air ambulance lifts-off of Hall of Fame Avenue near Main Street carrying a critically injured patient to care.<br> Photo Courtesy of Stillwater News Press

Architect, Gary Sparks designed these renderings of the Stillwater Strong Memorial. The memorial concept has been through several rendering revisions since the earliest discussions in late 2015. The dedication of the Stillwater Strong Memorial is set for Fri., October 26, 2018, at 5:00 P.M.

At Hall of Fame and Main Street, standing in the crosswalk (L to R, front) are sisters Hadley and Mia Wyatt meeting OSU Spirit Squad Members, Hallie Light and Makynna Edwards, as they finished the parade route approximately one hour before the crash. Hadley was critically injured. One year later all four girls re-staged the exact same photo.

Cowboy Football players, (L to R) David Glidden and Mason Rudolph visit Stillwater Medical patients. Here they are thanking staff and volunteers, (L to R) Dorothy Akin and Marilyn Filonow, for their service.

Alumni Pistol Pete Float photo taken by crash victims Sharon and Leo Schmitz from their position in the intersection of Hall of Fame Avenue and Main Street at approximately 9:15 a.m., just 75 minutes before the crash.

Rickie Fowler appears on the set for ESPN Game Day sporting a Stillwater Strong pin donated by Allen Adams - All American Pewter. Allen donated hundreds of the lapel pins prior to the Bedlam Football game honoring the victims and first responders.

Multiple meetings of the Stillwater Strong Memorial Committee were held at City Hall. Ken Skillman, Mark Lambert, Michael Greenwood, Norman McNickle, Gary Sparks, and Scott Petty gather around "Pete's Heart." This vibrant piece of artwork was donated by Stillwater Police Officer, Treavor Meredith, then raffled off helping raise funds for crash victims. The winner donated it back to the SPD.


Petty grew-up in the rural panhandle town of Guymon, Oklahoma. He graduated from Oklahoma State University in 1988 with a BS in Journalism, Public Relations. He served as the OSU Mascot, "Pistol Pete," from 1985-87. Scott and his wife, Gerri have two adult children, Catherine and William. Scott's 33-year career has been dedicated almost exclusively to healthcare and nonprofits. He has served as President of the Stillwater Public Education Foundation, the Saville Child Advocacy Center, and the Friends of Oklahoma Music / the Oklahoma Music Hall of Fame, in Muskogee OK. He presently serves on the board of directors for the  Stillwater Chamber of Commerce and is the Executive Director of the Stillwater Medical Foundation.

In January 2019, Petty was recognized for his philanthropic and community involvement by being named the Stillwater Chamber of Commerce, Citizen of the Year. 

D. Scott Petty

The Author


The Memorial

Architect, Gary Sparks designed these renderings of the Stillwater Strong Memorial. The memorial concept has been through several rendering revisions since the earliest discussions in late 2015. The Stillwater Strong Memorial was dedicated Fri., October 26, 2018.

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The inspiration behind this memorial is to dedicate a symbolic remembrance which stands the test of time while honoring the victims and their families even 100 years from now.  It should compel us to love our neighbors and it should remind us to step forward to help like so many citizens, students, alumni, and first responders did in those urgent seconds and life-saving minutes following the crash. 

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