Bill Zwetzig


Written Memory


Rain was coming down hard and I told my son Brian, we need to go help our neighbors, so myself, son Brian and Jim Huffman my neighbor went down to get Charlie Alliger out of his place. We had to tie a rope out to a tree so we would not get swept down with the fast current. We go to Erva and Charlie’s place and rescued and took them up to my place. I had a Colman camp stove and a gas lantern and a propane space heater, I got that started so they could warm up and gave them coffee. Then we took off again to get March Watson. When we got to her house there was so much mud around her door that we had to kick the hinges off the door to get in and when we got in March was sitting on top her kitchen table, water everywhere. And I said to her “March how are you doing” and her response was “Well boys I’m doing fine how are you doing” and if you would have known March, this was common for her to call us boys and to be so calm. I told her we are here to take you to my house. March, said “I lost one of my slippers” I said ok I will try to find it. But I didn’t, and then I told March to slide off the table, so she put one arm around me and one arm around Brian and slid off the table. I told her we are going to take you to my house and get you dried off and some hot coffee in you. Then there were two people on top of a trailer, it was Mary Ellen Conlan and her son, we got them down and took them to my house. Somewhere along this time we had the radio on, and they said that “Keystone was wiped off the map.” I said those damned fools. The next day, we got up and I headed to the store downtown, which is the Country Store now, but then it was the V & M Store and I was worried because I had two girls living in the basement of the store, but the store was ok, only thing was the carpet in the basement was wet and the house next door which was Alexander’s was flooded. Later then I headed up to Mt. Rushmore to assist where I was needed there.



“Bill Zwetzig,” Flood of 1972, accessed September 28, 2022,