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Kerry Collins, Published December 29 2009

Northwood tornado topped 2007 news

“Deconstructing a Decade”

EDITOR’S NOTE: As the start of the new decade approaches, it’s only fitting to reflect on the one now coming to a close. A lot has happened since the dawn of the year 2000. Each day through the end of this year, we’ll take you on a trip down memory lane and will look at what stories were making headlines in the Fargo-Moorhead area this past decade.

A region rallied around a tiny community in 2007 after a deadly twister tried to tear it apart.

The small town of Northwood, N.D., about 90 miles northwest of Fargo, was ravaged by a twister on Aug. 26 that killed one, injured 18 and did $30 million worth of damage.

Support from all over the region flooded in immediately to help with the rebuilding project, which was still going on months later and into 2008.

It took a couple of tries, but Moe Gibbs was found guilty of murdering Mindy Morgenstern in 2007.

The verdict came in November, and was the second trial Gibbs had to face after the jury was deadlocked in his first trial earlier that summer.

Just two days after the Gibbs jury deadlocked, 16-year-old Whitney Carlson was found dead in her parents’ Fargo home.

Carlson’s 15-year-old foster brother, Sergei Carlson, was taken into custody under suspicion of murdering his sister.

Dominating the local sports headlines was North Dakota State University’s football victory over Big 10 foe Minnesota. The 27-21 win came behind a school-record, 263-yard rushing day from West Fargo product Tyler Roehl.

Also that year:

  • A section of Interstate 35W in Minneapolis collapsed on Aug. 1, killing 13 people.

  • Thirty people died in an April 16 massacre at Virginia Tech in Blacksburg, Va.

  • Fargo Oak Grove girls basketball coach Mark Selisker’s death in the middle of the season shocked the community. Hours after the 46-year-old’s funeral, his team played in a district tournament game.

  • The Bobcat plant in Gwinner, N.D., was sold for $4.9 billion to South Korea’s Doosan Infracore.

  • Nearly 100 residents of Browns Valley, Minn. – a town of less than 700 people – had to evacuate after melting snow and ice flooded the town.

  • The University of North Dakota reached an agreement with the NCAA to stop using the Fighting Sioux nickname and logo if tribal approval isn’t received in three years.

  • Barry Bonds surpassed Hank Aaron as baseball’s all-time leader in home runs. Less than two months after the season, he was indicted on perjury and obstruction of justice charges stemming from a federal probe investigating steroid use.

  • Construction on the Urban Plains Center began in south Fargo as financing plans were still being worked out. The hockey arena would become home to the USHL’s Fargo Force, led in its first season by former UND head coach Dean Blais.


    Readers can reach Forum reporter Kerry Collins at (701) 241-5548