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Local musician uses his talent to raise more than $150K for Boscobel cemetery after tornado

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Local musician uses his talent to raise more than $150k for Boscobel cemetery after tornado

Local musician uses his talent to raise more than $150k for Boscobel cemetery after tornado

Thousands raised for Boscobel cemetery

BOSCOBEL (WKOW) -- Just over a year since an EF3 tornado tore through the small town of Boscobel, many areas, like the local cemetery still show signs of damage. However, one local musician is trying to change that. 

The Boscobel tornado tore down homes, trees and many headstones at the Boscobel Cemetery. The Cemetery's Secretary Pam Zimpel still remembers the aftermath. 

"It was like a war zone," Zimpel said. "I've never seen anything like it in my life."

The only funding the cemetery receives is from the sale of plots and private donations. So, Zimpel and other members of the cemetery board were put in a tough spot. 

"I was devastated. I was speechless, and I didn't know what was gonna happen," Zimpel said. "I didn't know how we were gonna fix it."

Enter former musician Doug Wayne. Wayne's family has lived in the Boscobel area for more than 100 years, and a lot of his family is buried in the cemetery. 

"After I heard about the tornado, what it did to the cemetery, the very next morning, I knew Pam was on the board — she's a lifelong family friend — and I called her," Wayne said. "And I said, 'How do you feel about me doing a fundraiser for the cemetery?'"

In just a few weeks, Wayne and several other local musicians got together to plan a music festival fundraiser for the Boscobel Cemetery. Their first performance raised nearly $27,000 alone.

They've held several fundraisers since, and even another music festival, which they plan to continue for years to come. Since the tornado, Wayne and the surrounding community has raised more than $150,000 that'll be used to help the cemetery rebuild and expand. 

"And there's people still sending money," Wayne said. "I mean, it just means a lot to so many people."

Zimpel says she's forever grateful for the help they've received. 

"I can't thank him enough. We can't thank him enough," Zimpel said. "He's unbelievable."