SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — The new batch of snow in KELOLAND is bringing back old memories for a local woman.
A deadly winter storm that hit South Dakota in January of 1952 blocked roads for days and brought 10–15-foot drifts, according to the National Weather Service.
The pile of snow right outside Betty Zimprich’s patio door today takes her mind back to that time in 1952.
“You couldn’t see. You couldn’t see anything,” Zimprich said.
The blizzard forced Zimprich, a second grader at the time, and her classmates to stay in their country school near Winner for three days, waiting for the storm to pass.
A teacher and a parent also stayed at the school.
“At first I thought it was going to be kind of fun, but then when I found out I had to lay on the floor I wasn’t very happy, but it was better than laying out in a snowbank,” Zimprich said.
Zimprich says her teacher had a stockpile of canned food for the kids to eat.
The storm was so treacherous kids couldn’t go to the outhouse alone.
“They were afraid you’d get lost in the snow, so an adult went with us every time we went to the bathroom. I didn’t like that part,” Zimprich said.
The blizzard memories are as clear as day more than 70 years later.
“I go right back to that. I can see their faces. It’s just something that’s there,” Zimprich said.