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43 years ago yesterday - Jan. 26, 1978.....


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I know our membership has a wide expanse of age groups. Probably a lot of you weren't even a glint in your parent's eye yet, and yet some recall this day in vivid horror.

Yes this was the day the Great Blizzard of 1978 attacked the upper Midwest of the United States, hitting the State of Ohio especially hard. Do anyone have any stories recalling the accounts of that day? It is a day I will never forget.

Here is my account.

I was a 20 year old following in my dad's footsteps working as a draftsman at Firestone in Akron. I was fresh out of tech school. I wanted to show my bosses that they could count on me to be at work no matter what the conditions outside. It normally was a 20 minute drive from West Akron to Firestone in South Akron. But on this day....

It was a pleasant day on Wednesday, but we all knew what was looming on Thursday. I was going to get into work early. Temperature was still at 34 degrees at 5 am, an hour later - it was 13. and the wind was ANGRY. All of a sudden, the wind chill was -60°.

I went out to start my car, and it would not start. I ran the battery all the way down trying to start it. Frustrated, I trudged back into the house. (I was still living at home). My dad and brothers met me and asked - "Looking for this?" It was the rotor out of my distributor. No wonder it didn't start! I was then told I was staying home no matter what. Dad said if my bosses had a problem with that they could deal with him. (He was a career Firestone man too).

I then remember looking out the kitchen window at the stop sign at the end of the street. I saw it being rotated 90° each way on the pole in the wind. We found it a few days later a half a block away, having been dislodged by the wind.

What a day.

Anyone else have any memories of that day? Every year since, around the 15th or so of January, I look at the 10 day forecasts to see if any other mega storms are on their way. If they would hit, it would be in the window of the last two weeks of January and first week of February.

Here's the photo array from the Beacon Journal.


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