Snowfall recall

A letter carrier delivers mail Dec. 23, 1996. Image: The Dickinson Press

North Dakotans will never forget the infamous winter of 1996-97, which brought eight blizzards, brutal cold and terrible flooding across the state.

Last week marked the 20th anniversary of the first blizzard, which dropped 13.5 inches of snow and blew winds that gusted at 47 mph.

The anniversary brought back vivid memories for the Postal Service employees who kept the mail moving that winter.

At the time, Fargo Letter Carrier Darrell Boreen delivered mail in Wahpeton, about 50 miles away.

When the storms raged, he often was unable to make the commute home. Instead, he would get a hotel room across from the Post Office.

“Maybe 20 to 25 days, maybe more, spending nights in a hotel,” Boreen told The Dickinson Press. “I lost track.”

Lynn Brosowske, a Fargo rural carrier, recalls the accumulation of snow around his home and the damage to his yard.

“A brother-in-law got hold of a skid steer and came and pushed it all up in my yard and managed to take about three-quarters of my turf with it,” Brosowske said.

“I was regrowing grass for a while.”