“All I could do was cry”: winds in a straight line devastate the neighborhood of Alexandria – WCCO

Originally published May 13, 2022

ALEXANDRIA, min. (WCCO) – The National Weather Service Friday said the damage in the Alexandria area was caused by a tornado – and is working to determine how strong it is – along with straight-line winds north of the city reaching speeds of 100 mph.

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Alexandria was one of the communities most affected by the storm on Thursday night. The result was a full day of mowing and cleaning for a neighborhood along Lake Darling.

Some yards have suffered more damage than others, including the Mary Ann Schlosser construction site.

“Why me? I’ve had more damage before, but never anything like it,” said Schlosser.

Schlosser was still in the main part of his house when a large tree fell on top of his roof.

Web Extra: Aerial footage of storm damage

“I looked ahead and I saw a tree fall on the house and then I looked out the dining room window and I saw it all [damage]and all I could do was just cry, ”said Schlosser.

When she woke up to assess the full extent of the damage, she saw that her garage was blown away and pieces of it were scattered around her yard. Also, all of her pines have been pulled up or uprooted.

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“We planted all these trees,” said Schlosser. “And look at them now, they’re all gone.”

The house next to Schlosser was almost completely wiped out. The family of four who live there, including two children, survived by taking refuge in the basement of Brian Casavan’s house across the street.

“It only lasted a moment. I settled in the basement, heard a loud thud and it was over, ”Casavan said.

He says he is grateful that his neighbors took refuge in his home as most of it was wiped out.

“They moved here last year and I hadn’t gotten to meet them yet, but right after the storm I went to their house to pick them up and bring them to me and met them for the first time and their children,” said Casavan. .

Sometimes devastation can bring out the best in people and, in this neighborhood, it proved it with all the people who showed up to help with the cleanup.

“Oh yes, it was wonderful. Everyone is just throwing themselves wherever they can help. It’s a great thing, ”said Casavan.

“I have had so many people who are caring to stop and help, it’s just overwhelming,” said Schlosser.

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Most of Alexandria’s power has been restored. The city is encouraging all neighbors who have trees felled on their private property to take them to the Douglas County landfill.