Worcester,Mass - Places of the Past, The Blizzard of 1978
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Larry Barter - Report this comment
How well I recall that day in 1978. I was working full time for Henry L. Hanson ( now the NE Telephone company ) on Brooks Street. The storm got progressively worse as the morning went on, and just after noontime they sent all of us home because a state of emergency was declared. At the time, I lived on Wilbur Street, a "private street" just south of the West Boylston line in Worcester. A friend showed up in a 4 wheel drive truck and did his best to remove the snow from the driveway as well as a path for my front wheel drive Honda Civic along Wilbur Street with his huge snow thrower. Back in those days, I was also a part-time radio announcer ( Larry Baxter ) for WORC-AM. B.J. Dean, telephoned me and asked me to come in if at all possible. Being young and foolish, I hopped in my trusty Honda and drove down West Boylston Street towards the city. The first memorable sight was the parking lot at the Registry of Motor Vehicles ( now an overpass of I-190 at Greendal Mall ) there were cars abandonded with snow to their roofs in that lot, and not a soul on the road. Abandonded automobiles were scattered about the street, the snowplows forged a path around them. it was like a maze at times. Main St. had snowmobiles going up and down it, some with sleds attatched. I parked my vehicle in the Worcester Center parking garage and walked across Worcester Common to the Portland Street studios of WORC. It was a total white out. I literally could not see my had in front of my face and had to shuffle along the reflecting pond and judge where I was by the drifts of snow where benches once were. The wind was blowing heavily, nearly knocking me down. At the station were Susan Sullivan, who was a news person, and Dave O'Gara, WORC's morning man. Susan and I kept WORC on the air throughout the night, reporting on events like the collapse of a nursing home roof, and closing of area businesses. Dave O'Gara was fortunate to get a room for the night at the Holiday Inn so he could be on-air for the morning shift. That next morning, my father contacted me from the Grove St. firehouse where he spent the night, unable to navigate the roads. I went to the firehouse and picked him up and we headed towards Whipple Street. A tough hill to climb in a car in a light snow, let alone after a storm of this magnitude. Our route took us down Main St to Southbridge St to Quinsigamond Ave., where I figured I could get on I-290 via the on ramp which looked passable. Well, right at the bottom of the ramp was a 4-5 foot high drift that neither of us saw until the car plowed into it. A kind snow plow driver gave us a push, and onto the officialy closed I-290 we went. It was impossible to exit at the Rt 146 Millbury St exit. There was snow in 6-8 ft drifts. Southbridge Street exit had a police car on the ramp, it's lightbar on the roof was the only thing visable. Finaly, we found the Rt 20 exit passible and took it to Greenwood Street and after a goodly struggle, the front wheel drive Honda made it to the top of that Whipple Street hill and I got my dad home safely. That is my personal experience with the Blizzard of '78. Today I reside in Tampa Bay Florida, and make regular trips to the Worcester area where the majority of my family still resides. Larry Barter
Nancy DeBarros - Report this comment
Blizzard of 1978 brings back alot of memories. I'm 34 but back then I was 10 years old and I remember jumping off my roof and landing in the snow. I still remember opening the door and seeing all that snow fall. I was so amazed at the storm. We had no electricity for days and school also was closed for days. Me and my friends built a huge mountain of snow and we made makeshift slides and we spent the day having so much fun. That is one storm i truly will never forget. It especially keeps a friend of mine to dear heart because she was one of my friends who I spent the blizzard of 1978 playing with. She kept me busy when we didn't have school. She tragically died in a car accident so we never got to talk about our experiences of that great snow day.
Sheila (Donahue) Cohen - Report this comment
I live in Colorado but grew up in Worcester. I remember that blizzard well I was fourteen and in eigth grade. My girlfriend and I had a blast. I seem to remember getting about two or three weeks off from school and spending most of it sledding at Green Hill Park. I remember my Dad had to be rushed to the hospital. The ambulance couldn't make it to our house so they called the National Guard. They had to leave their jeep at the bottom of Dix Street and hike up with the strecher. Then of course they carried my Dad down the street, that was quite a sight.
Joel B. Keith - Report this comment
I too was 5 years old when the Blizzard of '78 hit. I remember tunnelling out of the back door of our house at 121 Westboro Road, No. Grafton, MA. My mother was a Nurse's Aide at Westboro State Hospital at the time, and was snowed into the Hospital for 3 days, living on the food and drinks in the snack machines! The children in the little snow suits in the pictures above bring back sweet memories. Your Mom would suit you up, which was like getting ready for prolonged deep-sea diving, with the sweaters, long-johns, mittens, hats & snowsuit. then you'd go outside. After a few snow angels and building a castle with the snow-brick maker, you'd be soaking wet from the melted snow, and have to go in. Mom would now do the same as she had before only in reverse, and then make hot chocolate. You'd sit inside the rest of the day and sip cocoa, watching the cars spin their wheels in the brown snow on the roads. Ah, Winter in New England.
Bill - Report this comment
Yeh I remember the blizzard of 78. I was living at the time at Hanscom AFB in Bedford, Mass. at the time....I remember the snow drifts being higher than 15 feet as some are reporting....I came up to Mass. in 77 from San Antonio, Texas....It was like a Texas frog choker (thunderstorm) only snow instead of rain and it's was the first time I saw lightening flashes in the clouds and snow coming down so hard that you couldn't see 5 feet in front of you....I believe you call it a whiteout. Remember it put 5 pm traffic in it's place of route 128....Lost a week of work and Hanscom AFB was the only runway open to air traffic because Logan International was shut down......
George - Report this comment
Hi, I don't have a pic but I was 8 years old when the blizzard hit Worcester. The only thing I remember is the weather man ( I think, Dick Albert, NOT SURE) said that we should expect a dusting of snow only. My mother put us to bed.
Michael Klewinski - Report this comment
Oh my, do I ever remember the blizzard of "78". I was 14 at the time and going to the old Providence St. Jr. High. I remember they let us out of school like 1 1/2 - 2 hours early when it became apparent this was going to be a BIG storm. We ended up out of school for 3 weeks, and had to stay an extra 15 minutes every day for the rest of the school year to make up the lost time. Remember having to poke a broom handle down into the snow under my feet to find my father's car buried in a huge snow drift. Remember the city dumped all the snow on the Blackstone river bank on Mckeon rd. next to Holy Cross, there was so much snow, there were still traces of it there in June.
richard - Report this comment
i remember the blizzard of 78 very well, i was living in athol,mass.i was only 7 just turned in december. we were just about to move into our new home, and the blizzard hit so we had to move in the next weekend. our new house was on a dead end street. so they plows had no where to put the snow,so they put it right in front of our house right up to the roof. nice of them huh. we had to shovel it out and i remember i was shoveling too. and this huge mound of snow came right down on me. i was buried in the snow mound. my father eventually got me out. i am glad we have never had a storm like that again. i still live in new england ... in n.h. i still like the snow but not like that.
Tim Coyle - Report this comment
What I remember about the blizzard of 78 is trying to get my wife to the hospital at Britian Sq for my son's birth. I took 6 hours and a friend's 4WD to come get us.
Mary Jane Pitchman - Report this comment
Boy do those pictures of the blizzard of 78 bring back memeories at the time we lived at the top of gage street or otherwise known as St.Annes Hill my husband went out with my son and the other kids in the neighborhood and made an igloo tunnel out of the snow the kids loved it.
Mike Lo Vuolo - Report this comment
Boy these pictures bring back memories. I was a student at Becker Jr. College (now just Becker College). Our dorm was located on Williams St and I remember a bunch of us using cross country skis to go to the pubs. The bars stayed open until they ran out of liquor and beer. I remember the stores not having milk and bread and only had a few canned goods left. I remember jumping out of second floor windows and off roofs into deep snow drifts the first 2 days of the storm. I can also remember a few guys at WPI jumping out of windows and breaking legs because they didn't realize there were cars under the snow drifts. The best memory of the storm was that the snow stayed clean because you weren't allowed to drive, and everybody had the opportunity to meet neighbors they never knew existed. It was a great time.
Jonas F. Rudy - Report this comment
I lived in Worcester at the time of the Blizzard of 1978. This was the year I graduated from Worcester Boy's Trade. I now live in Kentucky and I have never seen another storm like it.
Robin Patriarca - Report this comment
I will never forget that storm, I was 15 and living off of Hamelton St. I being young was at the mall downtown and we were advised to stay put which of course I didn't heed. I walked home in the middle of that storm, a 20 minute walk which took me an hour and half but I made it. Next day we were jumping off the 2nd story of our 3-decker into the snow and trying to wade across a big parking lot. Couldn't do it though the snow was up past our waists. We had the bright idea to get rich shoveling peoples driveways, so shovel in hand we set off. After an exhausted hour at my friends grandmothers we shoveled a 3ft square:) So much for rich schemes. I liked that experience so much I decided to live in the land of blizzard of 78's. Having resided in Quebec, New Brunswick and now Fort Kent, Maine the most northern part of the US excluding Alaska. Snow like that is a yearly occurance. Funny I used to dream of myself in a sarong and barefoot in Hawaii, funny where we end up. It's nice to hear these stories as I get homesick sometimes.
Andy Power - Report this comment
Wow, just happened to stumble onto this site and it brings back some great memory's! The "blizzid" of '78 was something else. My buddy Scott and I had graduated from Burncoat High School in '77. We made a ton of money shoveling people out for about a week or so! I now live in North Carolina and must say I don't miss Mass winters one bit. However, having a memory of that storm is one I'll cherrish forever. Thanks for this site, nice to read story's of ole Woosta!
caroline - Report this comment
I was 5 at the time living in Lawrence,MASS,I have fond memory's of the blizzard of 78",I was the youngest of nine children and there being no school for days we drove my parents crazy,I remember my brothers having to jump out the window so they could make a path to the side walk,It seemed as if we got 8 feet or so of snow,When we did get the chance to get outside we where walking on top of cars and didn't realize it at first.well i haven't seen a storm like that one yet.Like they say in New England if you like the weather wait a minute.
Dennis Rafferty - Report this comment
I vividly remember the Blizzard of '78. I was 15 and remember watching the snow pile up. I lived in Boylston (just north of Worcester) and recall having to push our way out the front door. Our living room window (8 ft high) was completely blocked by snow drifts. My dad had one of the few heavy duty snowblowers on the street. I thought it was great because I made lots of money snowblowing for 5 days. When people talk about blizzards now, I say "this is no blizzard, '78 was a BLIZZARD!!" and they look at me funny. Great site, good memories
Juan C. Palacio - Report this comment
I just want to say that i am a transplant of Worcester, Mass. I have been down south, in fact my family left after the blizzard of 78. Just looking at these pictures has been great! So much that I plan to visit my one and only true home Worcester. I know or i am sure alot is no longer there or just changed, but it will still be home.
Robert Wood - Report this comment
I remember the blizzard of '78 quite well. I was 7 years old. My mother, Mary-Frances Wood, was a nurse for St. Lukes Hospital. The national gaurd had to come and get her for work. I remember crying and saying to my Dad, Ron Wood, "Mommy's going in the Army!" He reassured me a dozen times that they were only bringing her to work. He let me dial the hospital just to make sure she really was there and not in the Army. I laugh about it now and share that story as well as the stories of my Dad letting us jump out of the bedroom windows on the 2nd floor into snow that was only inches below. What a blast! Robert Wood Formally New Bedford Now resideing in Florida
Sandi Kraft - Report this comment
I just read the book Ten Hours Until Dawn which is a story about the blizzard of 1978 and Frank Quirk and his pilot boat Can do. Okay, I didn't read it, I listened to it on CD. I was at work while I listened to it. When I got to the part that has the actual recording of the radio contact with Frank Quirk, I started crying at work. It was so sad. I recommend reading this book. Or listening to it. It is written very well. It was so well written and narrated it was almost like I was experiencing what was happening. Where was I during the blizzard of 1978?? I was in a Chicago suburb. I'm not sure if my area was affected by the blizzard, but I do remember it was one of the worst snow falls we ever had in that area. I remember that year we had a very heavy snow fall. I was 6 years old and remember a path shoveled out to the street, the snow height was way over my head. I also remember jumping off the roof of our house into a pile of snow. My father was present at the time. He was shoveling the snow off the roof which made the huge pile of snow to jump into. I now live in SW Florida. I miss that snow, but I don't miss that cold.
steven charbonneau - Report this comment
I'll never forget that storm because it started the night before my 18th birthday and when i woke up and looked out the back door I could not believe my eyes.I was living on Douglas court with my Aunt Mildred and It took me and a couple of neighbors about 8 hours to shovel out our street.It was a private road and they did it last.My car was burried and all I could see was the antena.I'll never forget that day...............steve
Debbie LaPrade- August 09, 2007 - Report this comment
I was in my second year of college at Nichols College in Dudley. I remember I just got home from school and it was just starting to snow. My Mom, always so brave, was due in at work. My Dad had told me to make sure she stayed home as she had already gotten stranded in one storm. We lived in the boonies, Spencer, MA. I kept my Mom home and when my Dad got home he was so relieved. I can remember Govenor Dukakis with his sweater on telling us not to go out on the roadways. We lost power for a few days and I remember the Electric Company trucks coming in from NY to help out Mass Electric. It was nice to HAVE to stay home and just relax with no guilt. I have since moved to Northern FL. Worcester has changed SOOOO much. It has been taken over by drug dealers and the like. It is not the city I remember. But I do miss the occasional snow storm.
Henry Minsky- January 13, 2008 - Report this comment
We lived in Brookline. I was in high school. The power was out all over the town. Our house had an old gravity hot water gas fired furnace, not requiring any electricity. Some neighbors came over to stay because their heat was not working. I remember watching the National Guard helicopters landing and taking off in the parking lot behind Kenmore square, near Fenway park, to bring supplies to snowed in people around the suburbs. The roads were mostly empty, but our neighbors were cross country skiing down beacon street.
S. McManmon- January 14, 2008 - Report this comment
This is one of my first memories as a child. I was three and I remember climbing up on a 6 ft snnow drift on my parents car to get a snow shovel my parents almost had heart attacks. We lived on Shady lane in Worcester and soon moved to Vegas the winter on 1979 were in Vegas we got 6 inches of snow and my parents were not happy. They thought they would never have to shovel snow in Las Vegas, NV. Never saw snow again like that in Vegas just light dusting.
IRISHMAN- January 17, 2008 - Report this comment
I was 10 years old when it hit. I remember the brown snow on the street. I remember no sidewalks and every corner in the neighborhood had a huge pile of snow 12 feet high. I remember the snow drifts being really high and you could just dig into the side of them and make your own personal igloo. Then Mom would call me inside because she was worried that I'd get lost in the snow. Mothers and fathers sucked back then, they never let you enjoy anything. Today, Mom's and Dad's would play with their kids and enjoy the blizzard with them.
Tricia- January 21, 2008 - Report this comment
Irishman is right about parents today playing with their kids and enjoying the blizzard...that's probably because we remember how much fun that blizzard was when we were kids...until our mothers called us in anyway! My mother worried that we'd be hit by the plow so we had to play in the backyard.
Martha Greenwell- January 24, 2008 - Report this comment
Today is Jan 24, 2008. My daughter's birthday. How well I remember my husband driving on all that ice trying to get me to the hospital 40 miles away. We lived at New Haven Ky. The roads were heavy with ice. We made it in time. The heavy part of the blizzard it later that evening. Then the doctors, nurses and staff had trouble making it to the hospital. Some didn't. As patients, we had to help each other. Meals were late. Because of hospital staffs staying at the hosptial, we had no hot water. Newborns were not allowed to go home due to the dangers of the cold. Family and friends could not make it to the hospital. It was a mess. Dangerous, cold and miserable. Each year, on my daughter's birthday, I remember the weather and how things could have turned out worst. We are thankful for "Our Little Snowflake of '78". It was a memorable year for sure!
Janet Nigosanti- January 26, 2008 - Report this comment
I was working a nurses aide at the Westboro Nursing Home when the blizzard of 78 hit. I knew it would be bad so I packed a bag. By 11 p.m. that night all the cars in the parking lot were buried. We were trapped there for two days. The cook slept in one of the empty rooms so meals were not a problem. Some people managed to get in on snow mobiles and plows. We had a resident pass away that night. The hearse could not pick her up, so a friend of the funeral director picked her up in a 4 wheel drive. I remember walking to a friends house off the center of Westboro absolutely exhausted and looking for a long sleep. When I got to the house the snow was above my waist and I had to bodily push through it to get to the door. I now live in Florida and don't miss the snow at all.
Barb (Siergie) Knox- March 10, 2008 - Report this comment
The blizzard of '78 was when I threw in the towel so to speak. I was a newspaper distributer for the T&G, in Northboro. Some of the kids that worked for me stayed the night in the office stuffing the Sunday paper, so they were stranded there the next day. The papers were late, but they got there late in the morning - and we delivered what we could - at least to the stores. Left for California the next summer and never looked back. Here, I can look on the mountains and see the snow while it's 60-75 in the winter. I remember I had a husky dog that I tried to let out - when I opened the door, the snow was to my eyeballs - he looked at me as if to ask if I was crazy.
don willar- March 19, 2008 - Report this comment
thats when i moved away
Sean Conway- June 03, 2008 - Report this comment
Wow Im glad I came across this site.I was 6 years old at the time.I remember my Mother telling my Sister and I that we were only going to get a few inches of snow and that was far from the truth.We lived in New Bedford and we built a huge mound of snow (up to the top of of the garage )and sleded down it for months, all the kids from the area would come and play in or yard.As far as the shoveling , that lasted for days.The only other bad blizzard was in 2005 I think, I was in Dartmouth and we had 5 feet in our driveway, 8 feet drifts, plows got stuck and the national guard was called in to get them out, Im now in Texas and I do miss the snow storms, just not the clean up lol
Eric- June 23, 2008 - Report this comment
I had been dismissed early from good ol' Gates Lane School for a doctor's appointment that day. By the time I finished with the doctor, it was really snowing hard. My Mom decided the best thing to do was to go back to school and pick up all the neighborhood kids as school was getting out--thank God we had a Ford Station Wagon--about a dozen packed themselves into the car for the ride home! That evening my Dad tried unsuccessfully to make it up Wildwood Ave after work, but was finally rescued by a neighbor who drove down to the bottom of the hill and picked him up, much to my Mom's relief. The next morning,I remember waking up and looking out my bedroom window--it was still dark outside. "Why is everyone up so early?" I thought. I got up and realized then that it was mid-morning. The reason our bedroom was dark was due to a snowdrift that went up the back of the house and onto the roof! Snow was blocking the windows! But AH! Three weeks with no school--heaven for three boys--murder for my poor mother! I think we had to start school 15 minutes early for the rest of the year to make up for the time lost. I've lived in Florida three years now and miss my family and friends in Worcester to death--BUT not the cold or the snow!
Gene Cassidy- August 24, 2008 - Report this comment
I do remember 1978 and i was living in Douglas Mass and Dick Albert said hey we are gonna get a dusting of snow.I went to bed and woke the next morning to about 60 inches of snow.Our family all six kids could not get out our door,We had about a week off of school before we could go back.My dad was in Mass National Guard and was called to go out and rescue people who where stranded and lost.What a storm i will never forget,
Bruce Compton- September 13, 2008 - Report this comment
I was attending Clark University in 1978. All week school was cancelled. There were rumors plows had buried elderly walkers in drifts. The city was shut own to cars except for police vehicles, etc. Main South looked like a alking mall, with students coming and going to Moynihan's bar or picking up kegs and dragging them parade style up Main street back to campus.
Juan Palacio- October 12, 2008 - Report this comment
From time to time a feeling of nostalgia hits me. I starting searching on what I can find on Worcester and the fond memories I had in the early 1970's. I remember living across the street from Clark University and I believe 38 Benefit Street. I went to school I believe it was called Freedom or Freeland but not have any Mention of it. My best friend was Michael H.
dave monahan jr- October 28, 2008 - Report this comment
i grew up in west millbury iwas sationed on the conneticutnavy base at groton on the morning the blizzard stole in iwalked to the chow hall at seven a. m. for the free meal ihad a pocket full of money but restraunts open at eight very unusual cause in worcester mass. they apen at six i was heading for millbury i went back to the barracks through about four inches of snow it was just getting started i asked my good friend frank lindse if he was gonna venture north he said heck no im staing here and i said im gonna hitchhike up he said you will never make it i said ill see you next week frank and i headed out talk about a white out i couldnt see nothin i got a ride about a mile up the road but got diched at the bridge that cuts over to rt 52 what is now 495 dont quote me on # gets on main highway that takes me all the way through danielson conn. and into oxford mass by the time i landed in oxford and three vehicles later all four wheel drive i was frozen solid well more so just my clothing as luck had it i was wearin some high dollar long johns underneath the snow was 18 inches on the level it was high up noontime iestimated id have to walk the back road 9 miles into the west end not happy it was getting spookey now the police station is like one mile but if you go there they tell you to sit tight i dont want that news i gotta get to millbury well a shadow loomed out from the south it was a four wheel drive of some sort i hopped in driver says where to? i says i gotta get to west millbury but im not goin toget you stranded on those back roades lets run 12 to 20 and you can ditch meat the auburn sportsman club exit and ill go in on foot it is only 3 miles he said piece of cake consider it done and off we went we fought our way up 12 about 4 miles and 4miles down 20 and we got to the exit i needed he says can you make it i says its onley 3 miles and i was on foot i arived home in the late afternoon with a sigh of releife but my family thought i was insane for attemting anything so foolish but one has to realise it is an age thing and i was at an age life was grand.
Sandi- July 19, 2009 - Report this comment
I remember the blizzard of '78' like it was yesterday. I was living in Princeton and belonged to a snowmobile club, so we thought it was going to be great to be able to hop on our machines & go around helping people. Well can you believe it, we had too much snow to even snowmobile - Crazy! Now living in TX Nice and warm (hot actually) and we hardly ever see snow - Yippee! I do miss N.E. though. It's a very unique part of the country.
Tim Pellegrino- August 20, 2009 - Report this comment
I will never forget ~The Blizzard of 78'~ I was 15 years old & all I know is being from up on Grafton Hill... WE WERE ALL BURIED !!!
Judilee Elliott-Westbrook- October 07, 2009 - Report this comment
I remember living in Leicester and being 12 yrs old in the house with my 2 sisters brother mother and a family friend we were snowed in for 3days good thing my mother canned food before that and knew how to make bread or we would have went hungry.I have lived in Georgia now for almost 27yrs,I get back to the city of worcester to visit family only in the summer months about once every couple years.and I dont miss the snow.
johnny- December 20, 2009 - Report this comment
I was 17 teen and had just left my girlfriends house. I had 2 dogs at home to take care of, my folks were in AZ. so my dogs were alone at home. I remember walking home in that white stuff. It was a 5 mile walk. The snow was about 3 inches when I started my walk. By the time I got home 3 hours later the snow was over a foot high. I spented the next 3 days with my dogs and the fireplace it was the only heat we had. I was just amazed with the amounts that fell that year. well whenit was said and done it wasn't all that bad. I was great cross country skier and that was fun. Being a teen in Marlboro Mass was great and fun growing up.
john Colacchio- December 20, 2009 - Report this comment
I worte the last comment thanks for the memories
john colacchio- December 20, 2009 - Report this comment
My girlfriend lived in Northboro her name was Sherry Anabel and what a year that was the snow is something will never forget. That was our best year together, I wonder what became of her?
Elaine Wunsch- January 15, 2010 - Report this comment
My (then)Fiancee had relocated from NJ to take a job at Sprague Electric, driving to Mass right before the snow started. He was given a room at a motel in West Boylston, then after getting some sleep, woke up to see nothing but white. He recognized where his car was by the tips of the double CB antennas on his car, lol. He had packed a small bag of snacks for the drive to Mass, and when he found that everything was closed, he made those snacks last for three days, (which we joked about for years afterwards). When he called to tell me of the massive snow and that everything was closed down, all I could say was "are you SURE you want us to live in Massachusetts??" LOL! I moved out there in April of that year, and remember seeing traces of snow back in the woods around Wachusett Reservoir, leftover from that blizzard. I lived in the Worcester area for 24 years before relocating to Texas, but I still miss my former Mass 'stomping grounds'. I think I'd rather deal with snow, than to put up with Tornado Warnings every spring, in Texas! :-)
Amy Lord Szabronski- January 19, 2010 - Report this comment
I was five during the blizzard of '78. My parents, 2 year old sister and my self were returning home to New Bedford and found ourselves stranded in Sturbridge. We stayed in a Motel for a week. I remember a preist coming to our room and bringing diapers and food for us. My parents were not prepared for the storm...now, being a mother I keep all sorts of things in my SUV...just in case!
Libby Wright- February 06, 2010 - Report this comment
I was a Medical Technologist, working at Worcester Memorial. It took me almost three hours to drive home the night before, normally a 10 minute drive. The next day, Sully (a fellow lab worker) and I walked on 290 to get into work and help relieve our fellow lab techs, now going on their 3rd shift. We got picked up by a huge plow. The driver asked us, "What the hell are you doing out here?" We told him we worked at the hospital and he took us to the front door. It took forever to shovel out my car, all I could see of it was the tip of the antenna. I live in the Washington DC area now but go back to visit friends. I enjoy seeing that people still put chairs out to protect their parking space!
Lori C.- February 07, 2010 - Report this comment
I was attending Doherty Highschool back in 78 and the best part of the blizzard was missing school for a week! I remember people snowshoing and snow-mobiling along Park Avenue and Highland Street and I remember thinking how cool it was not to see 1 car in sight....
Virginia Vosburg-Geoffrion- February 17, 2010 - Report this comment
I was attending The new South high at the time the blizzard hit. As soon as my parents heard the news that we were expecting blizzard conditions, they kept me out of school. I wasn't feeling very well at that time anyway, so it was a good thing. The day the blizzard hit, my parents and I were walking to the Webster Square Plaza where the old Zayre store was, and did some food shopping at the old Iandoli supermarket. We could have saved a lot of distance and done our food shopping at Stop and Shop, at the corner of Park Ave and Mill St., but my parents liked to walk so it was their choice. We were in Iandoli for about maybe an hour or so shopping, and the snow was really piling up out side the store. Eventually we finally cashed out at the store, and trudged our way home through the snow. My parents wanted to stop for something to eat, but all I wanted was to get back home to our nice warm apartment. Of course, I won that one. We finally made it back about an hour later, and my poor feet were cold as heck. I am now living in Huntsville, AL with the most incredible, and the most wonderful man on the face of this earth, where we hardly, if ever see snow in the winter. I have been living in Alabama now for the last 17 years, and the very last time that I was in Worcester was about three years ago, during the summer. I miss my friends, and I miss Worcester, but I don't miss the snow.
Robert Langley- June 29, 2010 - Report this comment
I was working at City Hospital,C.S.R.Dept.when the snow started falling ,I parked my car across the street on Jaques Ave.kept looking out the window to see how deep it was getting,I said to my self ,self you better move your car ,so i parked it on the oppisite side of the street on the conner of the hospital next to a driveway,the wind was blowing around the building so hard it blew all the snow away from my car ,hence,no shoveling ...
Jeffrey Lind- August 27, 2010 - Report this comment
I grew up behind Norton Co. off of Indian Hill Rd. When the blizzard hit, I was 17 and a junior at Burncoat Sr. High. The afternoon the snow started, I walked up into the woods to hang out with my friends at our little log cabin we had. It was an actual cabin, about 10 feet by 10 feet, with a roof, door, etc. After trudging up there there thru knee-deep snow, I found myself alone, no one else had shown up. I hung around for a while, and noticed how fast the snow was piling up. I figured I'd be get out or I might get trapped there, so off I went. By that time the snow was nearly to my waist, it was getting dark, and It was a hard trek to get home. My dad was working at the old Warner-Swasey co, now the cinemas north. He had 4 WD and barely made it to the bottom of our street, and walked up the hill to our house. Next morning the sight was incredible. Cars buried, doorways impassable, brilliant, blinding white snow everywhere. A bunch of the neighbors got their snowblowers out and started going to every house to try and open up a pathway to their front doors. From there they started snowblowing a pathway down the street toward Norton Company, which had begun plowing it's streets and parking lots. From there, we were able to walk to West Boylston St, in Greendale, to get some food. I remeber Pike O'Hara's Liquor store actually still had bread and milk, as well as beer. We hauled a plastic red sled down there to use to carry the food back home. Later I went up to the old Eddy's Pub area and helped people dig out and push their cars back onto the streets. One of them was my math teacher, Mr. Mooshagian, whom I actually couldn't stand in school. But after that day, he seemed to be nicer to me, and I returned the respect back to him as well. Lot's off time off from school to hang with my brother, Rick, and my friends, Bowmar, Dana, Cathy, Tammy, Barbara, Tommy,and Dennis and all that great 70"s music!! Great memories.
bambie- October 03, 2010 - Report this comment
yes i sure do rember the blizzard of 78 all right..i was 13 and i lived on pleasant terrace.. we had the elderly high rise build then and the snow was up to the bob wire fence.. and the only ones who could go out on the roads was the national guards...it was crazy.. i live in maine now and have never sen another storm like in 78...
T Brown- December 27, 2010 - Report this comment
Grew up off of Burncoat St. Thought it would be smart to deliver the T&G AND collect weekly money, gots a ton of tips & had to hold onto gutters above garages to get the paper in to the fornt door & collect the money. Saw my uncle walking down Burncoat St. carrying a crock pot of food to his in laws. We made a ton of money "Blowing peopel out" & I'm sure we missed a lot of school. It was never too clod like it is in "Sconnie" where I live now. I'll take a ton of snow over the sub zero weather anytime.
carol- January 13, 2011 - Report this comment
I was 12yrs old. I remeber trying to shovel the walk before my folks got home but by the time I got to the end, I had to start all over cus the wind and snow had covered it over again with anougher 6". We watched the news all night and was glad the my dad made it home from work at the Boston Hearld. but had to go back after and didn't see him for 2 days, had to get make 3 runs on the daily paper! for the 2 days after the storm.
Tom- January 21, 2011 - Report this comment
I had a ball in the Blizzard of '78. I was living in West Boylston, near the center of town. I remember walking to the intersection of Rt. 12 and Rt. 140 at approximately 2:00 in the afternoon. I stood in the exact center of the two usually busy routes, looked in each direction and the only vehicle on the road was a lone snow mobile. It was a week before Feb. vacation and I remember thinking, "we'll be in school until July, but what the heck enjoy it now."
Brian- February 02, 2011 - Report this comment
I arrived at a Holiday Inn in Peabody, Mass on Sunday before the storm. I parked in the front lot of the Holiday inn & because of the way the wind blew only a dusting covered my vehicle. Cars parked along the side of the building were completely covered by drifts that reached up to the second floor of the building. The hotel began to run out of food, but the good news is they had plenty of alcohol. By the weekend I had had enough of the storm & because highways were still closed in Massachusetts I headed back to New Jersey via New Hampshire, Vermont & the New York thruway.
Suzanne Wheeler- March 24, 2011 - Report this comment
This was a pretty cool web site to come accross while searching for information on the defunct Henry L Hanson Tap and Die Company. My parents were working at the company which is now the NE Telephone Company. My Mom got stuck at work for a couple days until the National Guard was able to get them out. I was living on Crystal Street and all the kids were jumping off the 2nd floor porches into the gigantic snow piles. Best time ever building snow ramps all over the hill of Crystal Park (I think its called University Park now) to sled down and jump off. Those are some wicked awesome memories =D
Bill- April 02, 2011 - Report this comment
Ya!! ..........3 hour drive from W. Boylston to Shewsbury St Worcester couldn't make it up Belmont St so I had to go on 290 and had to leave the car at Mt Carmel Parking lot ( sorry Fr, John ! :) ) and had to walk to Olga Ave, across from Bell Pond. The kids took the sled from bell pond to White City. AHHH those were the days :)
HO- May 04, 2011 - Report this comment
chad aubin- August 27, 2011 - Report this comment
i am only 17 now but i was talking to my mom about this yesterday and shelived in upland gardens at the time she was 7 and she said her and her brothers built a slide of snow from there 2nd floor window and my grandfather pulled them up by a rope it sounds so crazy and it was coool to read what you guys are posting i cant believe how bad that storm was
Joe Pellegrino- October 19, 2011 - Report this comment
I was married living in Sterling Ma.On a privite st.My son John was just born We were snowed in for a week.Walked 3 miles to get milk and food.Had a blast jumping off my 2nd floor roof into the snow which was about 4 ft deep with 12 foot drifts.
Cheryl Peters Young- February 07, 2012 - Report this comment
Chad Aubin ,, what was your mom's name ?? I lived in Upland Gardens during the blizzard of 78 too and I remember kids jumping out the 2nd floor windows after that storm ,,, find me on facebook cheryl peters young ,,
Amador Rivera- August 20, 2012 - Report this comment
I was 19yrs old and I was at my girlfriends home at 1 Norwood St. watching TV with her, my car got buried in snow so I could not drive home to Wellington St., my girlfriend she was sure her mother would let me spend the night on the couch but me future mother n law said no, it was about 10pm when I started walking home, i got about halfway when i got picked up be the national Guard, who asked me what the hell was I do outside in this STORM, thank GOD they got me home safe that night . I did marry my girlfriend Christine Reyes and we just celebrated our 30th anniversary on July 24-2012.
Roger Davenport- January 20, 2013 - Report this comment
I remmber the storm i was 17 lived on pleasent st over the pickle barral restaurant. in 78 walked to my fathers work that day.on chandler street. mad alot of money that day.shoveling.good times
Erin Morin- February 04, 2013 - Report this comment
I was born on February 10, 1978, so I have no memories of the storm, but my mom told me that my father and her were nervous wrecks because they were afarid that she would go into labor. They lived in a wooded neighborhood in Holland, MA with my older sister. I was smart though. I waited until they could get out and my mom went into labor when she was on her way to her Dr's appointment.
Judy- February 06, 2013 - Report this comment
We lived on Southbridge Street at the time of the blizzard of 78 right near Cambridge Street. I worked at a downtown office building. Since we didn't have a car, we took the bus everywhere. It was a 10 minute ride at best. I don't remember if we got out of work early, but it was snowing pretty hard and there was a lot of snow already on the ground. I rember thanit took the bus more than two hours to get down Southbridge Street to my home. Nobody wanted to get out to walk, because that looked much worse than spending two hours on a bus. I remember my younger brother had to walk home from school, which was probably over a mile away. By the time he got halfway home, it was too difficult to walk. Luckily we had an aunt that lived close to where he was stuck, so he stopped at her house. Three days later we were able to get out of the house and meet my brother halfway and walk home with him. It was a lot of fun because there were no cars on the roads so you had a lot of room to walk. It was almost a week before I went back to work and I guess about three weeks before kids went back to school.
Jeanna- February 07, 2013 - Report this comment
I remember the blizzard of 78 I was 15 living on west boylston dr. What I remember was my family helping some of those stuck on 190 and bringing them to our house, 2weeks off of school, jumping off the second floor porch into snow drifts,I remember grabbing the bumper of the plow and sliding down the street holding on,the snow drifts being taller then me and my brother out shoveling to make some money. I also remember how many people did not make it home. As kids we loved the blizzard of 78 and have fond memories as an adult I am just glad I was home during it
Barb Terry- February 09, 2013 - Report this comment
I remember the big blizzard o 78 , we were living on Hanscom AFB. My neighbor picked me up to go to work, we got half way down the street and we did not know if we were on the road or not-- it was a white out! I went home and there we stayed for a week. They did open the commissary for about four hours , a few days after the storm had passed. It was the biggest storm of my life!
Jim Scanlon- October 25, 2013 - Report this comment
As I recall, the storm started around the time I was returning home from work at St. Vincent Hospital in Worcester (Vernon Hill). It was a Monday and it had been snowing for about 3 hours. I got stuck on Hammond Street at the corner of Glenwood Street and could not move my car at all. My dad was a General Forman with the Worcester DPW and told me over the phone that I should attempt to move the car off the street. When I returned to the car, around 9pm, it was surrounded by several other cars and buried in snow. It seemed that no attempted had been made to plow the street at that time. I returned home. At 6 the next morning I left for the Hospital on foot (with my cross country skis in hand) and found the area where my car was completely buried in snow. I Skied to the Hospital where I was a nurse on the Fracture Room staff. We had 2 or 3 patients who came in for cast problems but that was it, no regular patients could get to the hospital for appointments. Our staff was reassigned to work in various other parts of the hospital because of the large number of "call outs" that night. The staff of the Fracture room who were present were able to sleep in the exam rooms for the next couple days (there was no real way to make it home at this time anyway). This went on until Thursday when our Head Nurse was able to make in in to the Hospital on a National Guard 4 wheel drive truck. At that point she told us we could either help with snow removal in the parking lot or leave to go home until Friday as no patients were able to make it to us for scheduled appointments anyway. I shoveled snow for a couple of hours then was asked to report to the O.R. to assist one of our Orthopedic Surgeons with a patient he was operating on. I left the Hospital on Friday around noon on foot. When I arrived home I had to shovel out the front door to get in. Home was just my Mother who was not able to get the doors open to start any snow removal. Dad was still working. 5 hours of shoveling opened up our front and back doors and the driveway could wait until the street was plowed the following Monday. Its hard to forget a storm like that one!
JaniceFletcher- December 09, 2013 - Report this comment
I worked in Worcester at the Sheraton Lincoln the first day I worked and got home. The second day I couldn't get out. lived In Shrewsbury on the Lake , cars were stuck all over the place everyone who worked that day got stuck there for 3 days had to do everyone's job. I was glad I got stuck at home with a neighbor who h RVBad a ski doo not so bad
Joe- January 15, 2014 - Report this comment
I remember the Blizzard of '78 very well I had just gotten home from overseas in the Army. What a welcome home that was!
Terri Buckley- January 27, 2015 - Report this comment
The blizzard hit us out of nowhere. I decided to stop and get Mom and Dad an anniversary gift and forego putting gas in my 71 mustang. Well, I ran out of gas near the house, parked it in a neighbors yard. My boyfriend came over to shovel us out because the snow was so deep. Then his Dad made him walk home 4 miles in the storm so he could open the little family diner the next day. What a time it was!
Holly Rieth- September 08, 2015 - Report this comment
Oh how I remember the Blizzard of "78" because two memorable things happened. I was only 16; a sophomore at Burncoat Senior High and there was no school for a long time. I remember we kept the snow shovels inside so we could shovel our way out and I do mean "out". The snow was so high you could not see over it. Those were the great good days of incredible snow forts, snow ball fights, and how could anyone forget sledding at Green Hill Park. A place I also learned how to ice skate on the small pond. The Blizzard of "78" was also the time when I would meet my first love Glen "Scott" Fugere from Shrewsbury. Ah yes the good old days how could we ever forget.
kswck- January 22, 2016 - Report this comment
I was at Merrimack College at the time. Trying to get to Pennsylvania for a high school reunion-never made it. Three hours from Logan to the school. I remember a call to the local beer distributor for beer. A tractor trailer showed up. I also remember a snowball fight between the fraternities and the dorms-about 1,000 drunk people-fantastic night. Needed 5 guys to find my car the next day-couldn't even hear the horn through all the snow-5 guys, three hours of shoveling.
julio de jesus ( alias ) junior- April 26, 2016 - Report this comment
Could I ever forget, That blizzard of 1978 ,never I was 18 back then , living with my grandma and kid brother and sister ,the same very I had finished living my grandma at the city hospital with it heart condition .me and my brother and sister passed the whole blizzard along at the apartment in 17 great brook valley that was something else,I remember that day my grandma was supposed to be hospitalized early in the morning but she told the doctor not until I go to the supermarket at Lincon plaza , I think it was big discount .I remember we took the bus from the hospital to Lincon plaza did the grocery shopping, from there we took a yellow cab home then i called the hospital and they send ambulance for grandma, she was at the hospital for 7 days .how I could forget that blizzard of 78 ,by the way amador rivera and I belonged to the ionic boxing team back then .take care good old friend I haven't see him in 35 years. Now I'm 57. And living in puerto rico now all I have to worry is when the hurricane season comes hahaha u figure that out.I will always love my beautiful old city of worcester mass.GBU all
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