MONTPELIER, Vt. (CBSNewYork/AP) – A Brooklyn couple will remember their wedding day forever. But not for the typical reasons.
Newlyweds Marc and Janina Leibowitz and about 60 of their wedding guests have been stranded at several inns in Pittsfield, Vermont since Tropical Storm Irene hit there on Sunday.
“Basically we had an unbelievable wedding. She told me on Saturday night it was the most perfect dream wedding she could have imagined,” said Leibowitz, 31, an artist from Brooklyn, N.Y., “and then on Sunday morning … the weather changed.”
The group expected heavy rains but thought the brunt of the storm would miss this tiny town in the Green Mountains. Many of their friends thanked them for getting them out of New York City, the projected storm target, and into Vermont, he said.
“And then it hit,” he said.
Leibowitz and his bride, 28, also from Brooklyn, decided they needed to get to the farm’s other inn, where relatives — many of Janina’s from Germany and in the U.S. for the first time — were staying. The couple rushed out of their brunch with some of their bridesmaids, despite the owners’ warning that the road was giving way and that they should move up the mountain to stay with them.
Route 100 is washed out on either side of Pittsfield, so residents and guests can’t get out. But at least a dozen wedding guests have been airlifted from the town of about 400 people.
One guest on Tuesday contracted a helicopter because his mother was running out of breast cancer medication. He said the pilot made two other trips picking up groups of five, including an 80-year-old who also needed medication.
To pass the time the young couple and their guests have been helping out by shoveling mud from homes and getting supplies to the elderly.
The wedding party has a history of helping others.
“A lot of my friends, we all went through September 11th together, and we all volunteered,” Leibowitz said. They did the same thing during a New York City power outage.
Leibowitz said the general store’s owners have been cut off from their own home and have been staying at the store overnight.
The Leibowitzes were supposed to leave Thursday for their Hawaiian honeymoon.
To keep spirits up, they’ve been playing charades, and some of their musician friends who entertained at the wedding have been playing music at night.
“Different things to keep everybody from kind of freaking out. A couple of people have been freaked out and others have been really scared but we’re trying to keep people calm.”
Would You Be As Calm As The Leibowitzes? Share Your Thoughts Below