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Published July 18, 2011, 09:48 PM

Weigels picking up the pieces after tornado

Berlin, ND (WDAY TV) - A Berlin, North Dakota family says a recently installed storm shelter saved their lives overnight, as a tornado ripped through their farm, leveling every building there.

A Berlin, North Dakota family says a recently installed storm shelter saved their lives overnight, as a tornado ripped through their farm, leveling every building there.

One look at the faces of Victor and Beverly Weigel, and you would have no idea they suffered a truly devastating loss.

Victor Weigel – Tornado Victim: "It was just amazing..."

But it is clear, the tornado, the loss it left behind.....

Beverly Weigel – Tornado Victim: β€œHe says there is an air compressor outside, right out the door. And that's in the shop, and the shop is back there, so we knew things were bad."

The Weigels were finishing up dinner when Weather Service warnings told them to rush downstairs and take cover.

Victor: "You could hear the sheetrock and the glass and the insulation was coming down to hit us. We ducked in there and I tried holding the door shut and there was no way it took that and blew it out my hands."

Winds of almost 165 miles an hour whipped through the home, wiping away years of memories in one single blow.

Beverly: "I wasn't watching anything I just turned around and for 15-20 seconds we heard the roar the noise of things hitting and rain and all of that...."

One small room, the Weigels built for this very reason, sheltered them while their house was ripped to ruin.

Victor: "It could've blown this off and we could have been... but that stayed right there..."

With one look through that gaping hole, the Weigels knew there was no hope for their home.

Beverly: "We just put the basement on ten years ago, it was a nice house.."

The Weigel's are trying to salvage what they can from grocery goods to a golden locket. But they are still missing the symbol of their 30 years together.

Victor: "My weddings wing and stuffers are all gone, so maybe we will find it I dunno."

Beverly: "I usually don't take it off, so it goes. I guess he owes me a new one now.”

The tornado broke apart cupboards and books, but Beverly says it won't break their spirit.

Victor's family has owned the farmstead for generations. He tells us they may begin a brutal rebuilding process, or move to Edgeley where they work at a public school.

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