Wayne, NE - Friday, October 4th is a day residents in Wayne, NE won't soon forget. An EF4 tornado touched down that day around 5:30 pm. After the storm cleared, the real work began. Jim Flowers recently went to Wayne to see how the rebuilding process is going weeks later.
More than 6,000 people call Wayne home. It's a community that is desperately trying to get back on its feet. Wes Blecke is the Wayne Area Economic Development executive director. He says, "You can't do anything about what happened other than move forward."
The twister damaged homes and businesses. Officials estimate the storm destroyed between 20 and 25 businesses.
"Most businesses got up right away and started the process of rebuilding." Blecke says some businesses have temporary locations as they plan their future, "they're rebuilding as they're figuring out what they're going to do."
Sand Creek Post and Beam is one of the businesses that is rebuilding. It sustained major damage. Mandy Kubik is the sales operation manager at Sand Creek. She watched the storm from her driveway on the opposite end of town. "Wayne is not huge. How within a 10 block radius can the weather be so different?" she asked.
Kubik says construction is already underway on the new facility. They hope to reopen by the end of February.
In the past five weeks, people from across the country have reached out and volunteered time, money thoughts and prayers. City officials like Blecke say they are incredibly thankful for the support. "Without those types of people, I don't know where we would be right now that first response is so critical."