‘I’m just glad I’m alive’: More than a dozen homes destroyed in Boscobel tornado

BOSCOBEL, Wis. — Hundreds of people in Boscobel spent Sunday sawing trees, hauling branches and picking up the pieces left by the tornado that ripped through the town’s outskirts.

More than a dozen homes and nearly two times as many farm buildings were destroyed during the tornado, according to Grant County Emergency management.

Along CTH-MS, neighbors cleaned the worst of the damage.

Our whole home is gone,” said Kari Oates. “Everything. The trees, our home, everything we worked for. Everything. We bought this house over 30 years ago. We built onto it, fixed it up, and had plans to do more. We just put in a new furnace and central air.”

Oates, along with her husband Don, had the help of dozens of family members and coworkers, who used heavy machinery to clear the area near their home.

You literally don’t even know where to start,” Kari Oates said.  “You just look at it and it’s like, what are you going to do? Where do you begin?”

Oates says she and her husband were shopping in another town when they learned the storm was moving through. When they returned home, the wind had torn through their house, dismantling the roof and leaving some rooms entirely exposed to the elements. What Oates worried for most, was finding their cat. After a search, the couple found the cat underneath their couch.

I just held her and I started bawling, because I really thought she was in the debris,” Oates said. “As soon as I saw that, I said, that’s okay now.”

Across the street, family and friends helped Doug and Darcy Post in the cleanup efforts.

Like his neighbors, Doug Post wasn’t home when the storm hit. His wife, Darcy, however, was.

The tornado sirens were going off, again and again and again, so I went outside to remove a few things thinking it was just going to get windy,” Darcy Post said.  “By the time I got back into the house, it was all blown out, so I ran to the basement.”

When Post returned from the basement, her home’s windows were blown out,

“Then I looked outside and saw the devastation, and I just couldn’t believe it happened in 3-4 minutes,” she said.

Throughout Boscobel, hundreds of neighbors joined together to help with cleanup. 

We went to school here, we got married here, had our kids here,” said Doug Post. “This community to me has been a Godsend.”

I’m just glad I’m alive. I was scared out of my mind,” said Darcy Post. “We couldn’t get this done. They were right here without a call.”