Historical archive Covering the May 12, 2000 "St. Nazianz Storm" and Recovery  


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< Poems Section - The Great Storm >

This page was going to include little local stories or things happening that maybe weren't being picked up by the media......  well there hasn't been much time to do much with this section, all of us in the area have found a few things to do this week....  if you have any journals, stories, weird things you saw, etc., I would like to publish them here....... please fax them to 920-693-3141, or email to the webmaster, and I can put them in here, with or without your name.  In the meantime it's just a few things that have been happening....
By now you probably know of the big storm that hit our little town at noon time on May 12, 2000.  Big was the right word, terrifying and impressive might be a better ones tho.  It only lasted 10 minutes, now they are calling it a 'super cell storm' and not a tornado.  100mph winds and 2.5" hail, it shredded the siding, dented cars and knocked out most car and west house windows....
All stories and notes here are submitted by residents and volunteers and we can therefore not vouch for the credibility or accuracy.  We hope to have a few anecdotes, stories, and more links to other sites with news.
Saturday May 13 was a day of hard work for our residents and hundreds of volunteers that showed up.  The weather was brisk, partly sunny, but a biting wind.  Utility electricity was not available today, some areas were equipped with portable generators and lighting.  Saturday evening all volunteers need to be out of the village by 6pm, residents will have a 10pm curfew.
5/13/2000.  The National Guard [webwaster: 5/17 Command Center clarified, it was actually Army Reserve] called in to help with heavy equipment.  I asked one Guardsman [sic] when he was last called out, he said he'd been in the service 23 years and had never been called.
5/13/2000 There were 1700 registered volunteers from the public to assist.  This number was in addition to government and military personnel.

"It was noon time but it got real dark and windy, the hail stones started coming through where the glass should have been, I started picking them up so the carpet wouldn't get wet, then I saw my plants were getting blown in the wind so I started to move them to the other side of the room away from the open window.  The wall came off so I went in the other room."

5/14/2000 400 volunteer people dedicated their Mother's Day time to Village cleanup.
5/14/00 Lots of works remains!!  For the week days (Monday through Friday) starting May 15 there will not be staffing to coordinate volunteers.  There will be an organized cleanup again on May 20 [webmaster: later postponed to May 23, 9AM].  Stayed tuned to this site and local radio for details.
Independent volunteers and contractors during the week have been asked to display their permits when in the Village.  Permits from this past weekend will be honored.  Bring gloves and sturdy shoes.
5/18/00 In St Nazianz, the first house is razed and a barn is finished up in the township.  Looks like there will be only a few mobile homes that are not totaled, all the others will soon be a somewhat remembered part of history.

"It was like a freight train was coming through my house, I ran to the garage with my son, I laid on the back floor of the car on top of him thinking it was the safest place we could be.  He asked me if the other kids (at school) would be OK, I told them I didn't know.  We held on to each other, he told me he loved me, and we waited as the freight train came through......"

5/18/00  Rural crews are heading home for the weekend, too much rain and mud to work.
5/18/00 So far 700 tons of debris have been taken to the landfill site, and we are only now starting the buildings demolition......

"We have 6 people sleeping on the floor of our house now."

5/23/00 Over 500 people came out on a pleasant week day to assist with cleanup of fields and farmsteads.  They picked through almost 25 square miles, moving large roof sections, tin, boards and even nails and individual pieces of roof shingles, to the roadsides where is was to be picked up by Manitowoc County Highway crews.  Valders High School sent 280 students, buses, and supervisors.  Lunch provided by Red Cross, shirts and hats by Aid Association for Lutherans.
5/24/00 Repairs and demolition continue throughout the area.

The Great Storm

On a warm spring day
In the middle of May
The sun was shining bright
And everything seemed just tight 
It was that kind of day that everyone likes
But no one knew that disaster would strike
It happened just before noon
And the warning came none too soon
Manitowoc County was in for high winds and a huge storm 
Because of the meeting of cold air and warm
The sky turned pitch black and wind started to wail
Then all of a sudden it began to hail 
The hailstones were as big as three inches round
By then people knew that something was wrong
For a dreadful seven minutes, the storm raged on
it was like a vicious lion that just escaped from its cage
When the storm finally ceased 
There were no bad injuries at least 
But when they took a look around 
No on could believe what they found
St. Nazlanz was hit the worst 
So people helped them out first 
Trees were lying on the ground 
Siding and wood were scattered all around
Houses and barns were torn apart and crushed


Not a house in Nazlanz stood untouched
Most of the people could not believe 
And some could not bear to see
The destruction that the storm had done
It was a great loss to everyone People shed lots of tears 
They lost precious things that they had known for years 
The very next day help came from all around
Especially from the surrounding towns
The fire departments, telephone workers and volunteers helped out a lot
So did the Salvation Army and the American Red Cross 
And as this poem draws to an end 
Letís hope we never have to experience this again

This poem Is dedicated to all those homeless, devastated people out there, so they might feel our sympathy and know that we care.

            -Kelsey Esser Grade 6




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Pages within this site were last updated 05/26/2001 at 11:10 AM.  All information copyright 2000-2004, all rights reserved.