Norma Smith grateful to Grand Forks Fire Rescue after checkin on her during July 20 wind storm

A woman in Grand Forks is grateful to Grand Forks Fire Rescue for checking up on her during the wind storm on July 20.

A woman in Grand Forks is grateful to Grand Forks Fire Rescue for checking up on her during the recent wind storm.

Norma Smith witnessed the wind storm on July 20 and was relived to hear a knock on her door and see firemen asking if she was OK.

She’s been to New Orleans twice in the last year and has seen the damage that can be caused in a storm or in that case 2005’s Hurricane Katrina.

“I’ve seen all the devastation and read many books on it and I think, ‘Wow, I felt something about that,’” she explains. “Here we are in this storm and the fire department are here; how comforting! It was very, very comforting to know that we do have people that care – only in a small town though, does this happen.”

She said the fire department specifically stopped by to check up on her and isn’t sure if it was Fire Chief Dale Heriot’s doing, as he is the only person on the department she knows.

Smith said that in 2011, when the Kettle and Granby Rivers rose to near flood levels, the department once again stopped by to tell her that she could get sand bags.

“They just said, ‘Yes, we can see that you get your sand and get a group of people sand-bagging,’” she said.

Fortunately the river didn’t rise high enough to flood her house.