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Man Cleans Storm Damage Before Wedding



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Residents in Lake Norden are cleaning up from the recent storms.

Unlike others, one man has a deadline for when his land needs to be in tip-top shape. He has two important events coming up on Saturday. One of them will surely be one of the most important days of his life. The other is more than a hundred years in the making.

On Friday, 80 mph winds took its toll on many homes and trees in Lake Norden.

“It was like a jungle. You had to walk over and under trees to get out of the house,” said Eric Rust, resident.

Eric Rust lives just outside of town. On his family farm, around 20 trees were damaged. A tree fell on four of his cars and the door to his hoop barn disappeared. Yet for Rust, the damage hit home a little differently.

“It’s sad to know I grew up here and we never had any storm damage and then one week before the wedding this happened,” said Eric’s sister, Amy Neitzen.

On Saturday he will be marrying his high school sweetheart, Christy. Only the wedding is set to take place on the same farm.

“We’ve had a lot of family that’s helped the past two days. They came to help with the wedding and they got surprised,” said Rust.

“I want the wedding to happen the way he wanted it to and I know they put a lot of time and effort on getting everything ready,” said Neitzen.

Saturday has even more significance to the couple. It was on that day exactly 125 years ago, that Eric’s ancestors signed the homestead forms for the farm he lives on. Celebrating an anniversary and a wedding on the same day is something the couple has always dreamed of.

Even though his big day is near, he still has a lot of work to do. He’s reaching out to others in the area.

“He actually had a post online the other day that he was putting his help to other people,” said Neitzen.

“If they need it, it’s just what you do,” said Rust.

It’s knowing that surviving this storm will help Eric and Christy weather bigger issues in the future.

Rust says to his knowledge, the family’s farm has never received this much damage.
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