PLATTEVILLE, Wis. — There’s a lot to appreciate about living and working in Smalltown USA.

A recent article in the Dubuque, Iowa, Telegraph Herald reminds us of that in sharing the recovery of a Spring Green Lawn Care franchise owner Steve Petersen in Platteville, Wisconsin, after his rented company headquarters were wiped out by a tornado on June 16, 2014. Platteville is a city of about 11,000 people in Wisconsin’s far southwest corner. At one time it was a mining town, but it’s now a college town hosting the University of Wisconsin-Platteville and its strong engineering program.

Petersen was drinking a morning cup of coffee at his home 2 miles west of Platteville when he learned of the tornado. He recalls getting a call asking if he needed any help. As he drove to the city and saw the damage caused with what was later determined to be two tornadoes, he realized why he got the call. A tornado had taken out his service building and two of his trucks.

“Looking back, thank goodness nobody got hurt. We learned a lot about Platteville as a community. Complete strangers would walk up and ask if we needed help cleaning up,” Petersen is quoted in the Telegraph Herald.

Petersen has since moved his company into a larger location and is going full blast again.