Editorial: The Story of Sapulpa


With crime being reported almost daily in our community, many people, especially on local social media groups, proclaim that Sapulpa is a horrible, crime-infested den of iniquity, primarily populated by dastardly denizens. Unfortunately, crime is everywhere, and Sapulpa is no exception.

The fact is, even though overall crime is 6 percent above the national average, we are 8 percent below the state average. Furthermore, we are well below the state and national average for all categories of theft and violent crime.

Crime, however, is not what defines Sapulpa. Sapulpa is defined by the indigenous people and immigrants who settled this fair land and built a settlement into a city. By generation after generation of hardworking entrepreneurs who, while striving to make their fortunes, built churches, started civic clubs, became leaders in the community and gave back to the city that made them prosperous, in a multitude of ways.

Many of these families continue to this day to share their wealth through philanthropic efforts, such as the Berrys and the Bartletts, just to name a few. Then there are the people who grew up in Sapulpa, left and returned to make Sapulpa the nexus for their businesses, such as Joni Rogers-Kante, the owner of SeneGence International, who has already contributed greatly to her hometown.

Volunteerism is the backbone of non-profit charitable organizations and Sapulpa has been abundantly blessed with many such people. The Sapulpa Ministerial Alliance, Community Caring Friends, RSVP, the Lions Club, Rotary, Kiwanis, The Elks BPOE, the Masonic Lodge, and a host of other organizations who strive to make Sapulps a better place to live, are but some of the groups who make Sapulpa a better place. There are a plethora of people who serve on various boards and advisory committees. The outreach programs of churches here in Sapulpa provide meals, clothes, temporary lodging, and assistance during disasters.

I am proud to call Sapulpa my hometown. Nowhere, will you find a community where so many of its citizens are willing and eager to help during a natural disaster or to help someone in need. I further submit you will be hard-pressed to find another city that has so many caring people. This, my friends, is the story of Sapulpa.

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Charles Betzler

Charles Betzler

Long-time Sapulpa resident, Charles Betzler, followed his father, Charlie, into the radio and TV repair business. At age 9, he fixed his first broken radio and his first love is vintage audio equipment. In his 50 + years of technical work, graduation from OSUIT, and years of Continuing Education, Charles, in his capacity as Emergency Management Director of nearby city, designed the Emergency Operations Center, and the radio-activation system for the sirens. In his long career, he has repaired every type of consumer electronics from black-and-white TVs to the latest lap-top.