Golf course designed for veterans hit by Stearns County storm

Clean-up efforts are well underway in Stearns County, Minn. after storms rolled through early Wednesday morning and caused a lot of damage.

Belgrade and Melrose are among the areas hardest hit. One place that suffered a lot of damage is a golf course in Belgrade that's designed specifically for veterans.
The owner, Marlyn Marquardt, is a veteran himself and now he has to figure out how he can rebuild.

"It makes me stronger, but I am getting weaker,” said Marquardt. “Able body-wise with age."

Marquardt has poured his heart and soul and a bunch of his own money into MarHaven Greens south of Belgrade.

It's a course specifically designed to allow able-bodied veterans to play right alongside their injured brothers and sisters who might need wheelchair assistance.

Ten years ago, Marquardt says a tornado touched down on his 25 acres. Now this week, he's dealing with a whole bunch of tree damage. It's a similar scene across a corridor of this portion of the state, which stretches right up to Melrose along the I-94 corridor.

"I don't wish it on anybody to have another event like this or tragic thing that could happen,” he said. “It takes too long. It doesn't heal overnight. That's the problem."

With a lot of lot of work ahead, crews are starting to remove the debris left behind.

"Mother Nature does its thing,” said Jason Zwilling, a worker for a tree removal service. “Everybody helps out and it all disappears in short amount of time, hopefully.”