It was about 7:30 Monday evening, and Terry Crouse could hear things outside banging in the wind from Hurricane Sandy, as he sat in his second-floor apartment on Howard Avenue, catty-corner from the Building II.
Then a loud crash.
He ran upstairs to check, while fiancee, Katie Isett, ran down and outside.
Mirror photo by J.D. Cavrich
A spruce tree fell on the home and truck of Scott Robinson on Washington Avenue after Monday night’s storm.
Isett found the problem:
Bricks from the side wall of their building were strewn all over the adjacent parking lot.
She yelled - some things "you can't print" - that they had to get out and the building was falling down.
They collected their young son and some items and went to a friend's house in Tyrone to spend the night.
Tuesday morning, they returned in daylight to find that the downstairs tenant had stayed all night, that the bricks loosened by the rain and wind were just the casing and that the building wasn't falling down.
So they were back inside Tuesday to tell the tale and to explain how it had seemed worse than it really was in the chaos of Monday night, with the wind howling, rain slashing down and Hurricane Sandy in all the news.
Sandy was terrible elsewhere and bad enough here - but not as devastating as people feared.
The storm stripped parts of three brick facades - including the one on the Crouse-Isett apartment building - tore roofing materials off other buildings and uprooted or broke off numerous trees, downing wires and leaving 6,700 customers in the city without power at one point around 2 a.m. Tuesday.