October Snowstorm: Avon, These Are Your Stories

What are your memories of the October snowstorm? Did someone help you who you want to thank? Were you the one with the generator letting neighbors without power stay with you? Tell us your stories in the comments!

Before Oct. 29, 2011, if someone asked you if you could survive nearly two weeks without power, what would you have said?

Regardless of your answer, now you can have assurance that you can.

And while many of us are cringing at the thought of possible power outages if Hurricane Sandy reaches Avon, frighteningly close to the anniversary of the October snowstorm, one thing's for certain. Everyone has a story from experiencing that storm and each one is different.

Yesterday I told you my story, so let's take a look back at some of yours.

Twitter follower @sgt1917 tweeted us: "@AvonPatch Without power for 11 days, my generator quit working on day 2 and we all slept in 1 bed to stay warm and ate spam & eggs!"

Meanwhile my Spam is still sitting in the cupboard.

Avon resident Karen Cianci commented on Facebook about her not so fond memories of eating canned beef heated on her family's wood stove. Luckily, she said on Facebook, her neighbors cooked them a meal with their gas stove and let her family use their shower.

"We played board games by candlelight and read by candlelight," Cianci wrote on the Avon Patch Facebook page. "All-in-all, it was rather quaint and a nice relaxing time."

For Terri Wilson, longtime resident and Avon Historical Society president, the October snowstorm reminded her why she loves her neighbors so much.

"Our 'Hood' is the best in Avon. It took no time before chain saws were running, coffee was being made (off a generator) and food was assembled and 10 families shared breakfast and dinners for 8 days and nights thanks to 2 gas stoves and 2 freezers (run by the same generator) that kept everyone from losing food," she wrote in the comments of one of our stories looking back on the October storm. "We all came together and spent cold mornings and nights (by candlelight) with hot food - we had an incredibly huge Thanksgiving dinner one night, pizza on 2 grills another night, all BBQ and other night, soups, stews, and breakfasts were eggs, pumpkin pancakes, all sorts of breakfast breads from freezers or baked in the gas stove ovens, etc.

"We decided that among those in our 'hood' we could survive for probably 2 weeks without ever having to go to the grocery store! Thanks to everyone who made it possible - it was a true family gathering of sorts that allowed us to weather the storm!" Wilson continued. "By the way, my coffee maker made 450 cups of coffee that week - thanks to everyone bringing over their coffee!"

Others left town to stay where there was electricity.

"We went to Madison and had the most lovely time on the beach every day at Hammonassett," Leslie Winter Gordon wrote on the Avon Patch Facebook page, "an unexpected vacation..."

Harriet Hoffman commented on our Facebook page that she didn't use to have a car charge, but you better believe she has one now. She said she is grateful to Village Cleaners in Avon for letting her charge her phone there.

In addition to being without power for about 12 days, Avon resident Marcia Duggan Wells wrote on our Facebook page that it was equally as frustrating when she went without her Comcast phone landline, internet and television for that long. She relied on her cell phone a lot and let anyone who needed it make calls from her phone.

Mike Lloyd, of Avon, cleared nearly 25 downed trees from his street, Chevas Road. Many others in town did the same in their neighborhoods.

“I chain-sawed my way out of my road to get to work yesterday,” Lloyd told Patch in early November of 2011. “A gentleman was on a dialasis machine yesterday and came out of his house, so we said we’d better get him to the hospital.”

Other Avon residents on Montevideo Road – a narrow, wooded drive that stretches all the way up to Talcott Mountain Academy – stayed with Michael Konover and his wife at their large estate because they had a generator.

“When we lose power or can’t get out of the road when trees are down, we all come together and usually have a potluck dinner or something,” Konover previously said.

The Meat House of Avon delivered bags of food to customers stuck at home without power and fed the line crews pulled pork sandwiches.

During the debris removal process, the Avon Volunteer Fire Department hosted Tennessee-based Michael's Tree and Loader Service workers for a Thanksgiving dinner. Miller Foods provided the turkeys.

Angela Antonelli, of Creative Works for Children on Canal Street by Town Hall, opened her doors as soon as the power came back on Halloween to offer a place for parents to come charge their electronics and bring their kids to play. They did everything from parachute games to blowing bubbles.

"It's just something to get the kids out of the house," Antonelli said on Nov. 4, 2011.

On an early November day last year when contractors were working to restore power to the Huckleberry Hill area, told Patch that they were greatful for the generocity of their friends.

“Everyone’s helping out. Our kids have had a couple sleepovers…. We have friends with generators that graciously let us take showers,” Welch previously said. “We’ve tried new recipes on the grill, pizza on the grill.”

One year later, now what? Wilson and her neighbors are not forgetting the tough time without power when they all came together.

"We are having a reunion dinner this Sunday night, by candlelight, and with food we have 'on hand,'" she wrote in the comments. "Should be fun - we made it through Alfred!"

What are the October snowstorm stories you talk about with friends and family? Did you get a generator? Did you have people over? Were you one of the many residents sawing through trees so people could drive out of your neighborhood? Who was your storm savior? I'm sure you all have stories, so please take a moment and share it with us in the comments.


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