Coon Valley recovering after storm rips through western Wisconsin

- Monday’s severe weather took a major toll on some communities in western Wisconsin, from uprooted trees to flooded roads to torn up roofing.

Among the communities affected is Coon Valley, located about 25 miles east of La Crosse.

Many local roads have been very difficult to get through because of mud slides, with crews having a tough time getting in and out of Coon Valley to help residents.

At least 10 inches of rain dumped onto the small town in a short time Monday night into Tuesday. The heavy flooding tore through the local ballpark—destroying the gazebo—and ripped people’s homes off their foundation.

“There was water running down the streets; all the basements were full of water,” said Julie Noth, owner of The Legacy Bar.

The bar is now flooded in the basement, and Noth can’t believe the devastation as the water heater and furnace will also need to be replaced.

“I’ve seen flooding. We get it often, but not like this,” she said.

A block away, Tiffany Rundhaugen, owner of Thrifty Pickings, has likely lost more than $150,000 in inventory.

Rundhaugen and her children had to stay in the store all night and wait out the storm because their home lost power. The back room is trashed with debris that came barrelling across town.

Across the street, an assisted living facility had to be evacuated as water quickly filled inside. People in and around Coon Valley were rescued by firefighters as water rushed in and woke them in the middle of the night.

“A lot of people were sleeping, and a lot of people woke up really suddenly last night,” said Ryan McGuire with the Coon Creek Fire Department.

Luckily there have not been any injuries or deaths reported. As the cleanup begins, residents say the recovery could take weeks if not months.  

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