Family flees dream home to get to higher ground - KTTC Rochester, Austin, Mason City News, Weather and Sports

By Katie Lange

Family flees dream home to get to higher ground

(KTTC) -- County Road 68 is still not passable after the Zumbro River washed out entire sections of the road. The Dostal residence is just one of about 10 farm sites that were entirely flooded out. 

The Dostal's knew they had to get to higher ground. They fled from their dream home, built just 10 years ago and headed up the path in their Tahoe to their daughter's home.

"He was telling them to hurry up and get in.  I was looking straight ahead and I saw this five foot wave,"says Betty Dostal

Soon the family became stranded inside the vehicle.

"The engine sounded to me like someone took a big hit belly punch and died."

Water quickly filled the vehicle. The doors locked, but luckily a window rolled down and they were able to escape. At this point the water was chest high. Everyone except Jeff, boarded a small boat that was at his daughter's and paddled toward higher ground.

"We were actually going up stream, but I was able to touch," says Jeff Dostal.  "After a while my feet weren't touching the ground and I was just hanging on the boat for maybe 75-yards. The current was so swift, I knew if I would have let go, I probably would have drowned for sure."

Eventually they made it to their neighbors and were rescued the next day by air boat.

Betty says they didn't have flood insurance and that quite frankly, it's rather expensive to purchase. When the Dostal's build their home, they did build it a foot higher than the hundred year flood plain and thought there was no reason to have to worry.

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