The yellow caboose dubbed the Prairie Chicken, equipped with a hot tub and fireplace, and the red-painted Red Rooster had been restored with queen-sized beds, central heat and air, bathrooms and kitchenettes. She had entertained a steady stream of guests since opening in 2007. Both cabooses were destroyed.
Morse is not sure she will be able to rebuild the bed and breakfast. The wheels on both cabooses are broken.
“I'll probably sell them or donate them to a museum,” Morse said. “Or sell them to someone who can set them on blocks.”
The extended-cab cabooses were made in 1974 and used by Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railway. She found the Red Rooster in Fremont, Neb., and the Prairie Chicken in Ada.
Morse injured her left foot, possibly when she ran to the utility room, and it has remained swollen. She's been living without water and electricity at the cabin and has spent a few days at a hotel since the tornado, keeping a lot of her personal belongings in her minivan. She said electrical work will have to be done at the cabin before the power can be turned on.
“I'm just glad to be alive,” she said.