St. Peter Tornado: Remembering 6-Year-Old Dustin Schneider
March 29, 1998, a day people in St. Peter, Comfrey and other towns in southern Minnesota will never forget as a powerful tornado tore through the heart of the communities.
The damage totaled more than $200 million.
One person died the night of the tornado...6–year–old Dustin Schneider, near Highway 99 when the tornado struck their van.
Tonight, his parents recall the living nightmare and the message they have for parents everywhere.
20 years ago, the Schneider family was enjoying a peaceful Sunday afternoon playing basketball at a park.
Steve says, "It was sunny and within a minute it hit us."
They tried pulling over on a gravel road.
But in a matter of seconds, their only son was torn right from her arms.
Diana says, "I couldn't remember landing."
Little Dustin, his mom's fishing buddy, was found 150 yards from the van.
Steve says, "He had a punctured lung and we thought they had revived him."
Now, all that remains is memories, photographs, and one item that was with them that fateful night in the van.
"They found that basketball still intact. Nothing wrong with the ball."
The ball was found about a mile away from the Schneiders.
A ball they had played with just moments before.
A lasting remembrance of a life taken too soon.
Diana says, 'Some days it just doesn't feel real."
Dustin would've graduated with the St. Peter class of 2009.
His parents have stayed in the same house in Mankato because of the memories they shared with Dustin there.
One other person died as a result of the storm, 85–year–old Louis Mosenden of Hanska.
-KEYC News 12