Storm Cleanup Underway in North Liberty

By Dave Franzman, Reporter

NORTH LIBERTY, Iowa- Several dozen families in North Liberty are cleaning up debris and putting tarps over sections of homes following a storm and high winds Thursday night.

City administrators say two homes in different subdivisions in the northern part of the Johnson County community received heavy damage from straight line winds. Probably three or four dozen other homes had enough damage from lost roof shingles or siding to call insurance adjustors.

One of the most heavily-damaged homes belongs to Iowa City's new Fire Marshall Brian Greer. The family's middle son, Connor, was the only one home at the time the storm blew through. Connor said he looked out into the garage and saw the two overhead doors blowing away. He then shut the door into the home itself and called his mother. She told him to head to the basement.

"I just thought what am I supposed to do and I was worried about the house," Connor Greer said.

The Greer home lost one entire side of the structure to the high winds. A metal canoe inside the garage actually shot through the backyard and took out part of a fence belonging to neighbor Darron Buch. Buch said he went out and grabbed the canoe during the storm so it wouldn't get loose and cause any more damage in the neighborhood.

"I put that (canoe) in a spare garage and knocked on their door in the morning and I said I think I have your canoe in my garage," Buch said.

Greer said several off duty Iowa City firefighters turned out to help him with the cleanup.

Jennifer Montgomery is also someone not usually fazed by bad weather—except when it happens to her own home. Montgomery is a volunteer weather spotter with the National Weather Service. But she wasn't home to witness the storm that blew out windows and soaked one of her bedrooms.

"A little too close to home there," Montgomery said adding "If I'd been out chasing that was one thing but when you have your kids with you it's a little too close to home."

Several residents said aside from clean up, it may take time to sort out just what belongs to other people. The wind blew things from yard to yard. Rachel Lode said part of her fence landed in a neighbor's yard. But she got an extra trampoline in return. She didn't know who owned it.
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