MARSHALL COUNTY, Miss. — Crews with the Holly Springs Utility Department are continuing their efforts to restore power to Marshall and Benton Counties following last Wednesday’s destructive storm system.

Straight line winds brought down trees and power lines, leaving many people in the rural communities in the dark for almost a full week.

Stephanie Taylor spent Tuesday cleaning up storm debris on her property in Lamar, Mississippi in Benton County. Her home was damaged by Wednesday’s powerful and fast-moving storm.

“We lost power immediately when the storm hit,” Stephanie Taylor said.

The power outage turned into a family affair. Stephanie, her children, her mother, her aunt and husband all live next door to each other and faced almost a week without power.

“The waiting and the hoping was very frustrating. In fact, three years ago I quit smoking,” Patricia Taylor said. “This week I took it up again because of the stress.”

Crews from the Holly Springs Utility District finally restored their power Monday night. They are relieved but are upset that it took nearly a week, and they claim no communication from the utility company.

“I called the utility company several times, got a recording ‘we understand the power is out, we’re working on it, we have no idea when it will be back on,'” Taylor said. “That was very frustrating.”

Holly Springs’ Mayor Sharon Gipson said this storm left damage across Marshall and Benton Counties, and rural area were hardest to reach.

“We’ve had to bring in bulldozers,” Gipson said. “We’ve also had to bring in tree cutters in order to clear out the area so the repairs could indeed be made.”

Mayor Gipson said crews have restored 95% of the power with only a few isolated outages remaining. One of those areas is on the northeast side of Ashland.

“We’ve got one, two, three, four, five of us on this little hill, and we’re all without power,” Denise Gant said.

She is hoping to get her power restored by Tuesday night. In the meantime, she is feeding utility crews deer burgers, cole slaw, and potato salad as a way to say thanks.

“I think these guys is doing the best that they can do,” Gant said. “I promise you they’re doing, you know. You see them on the roads back and forth. I mean there’s only so much they can do.”

Mayor Gipson said this storm was a learning experience, and she has been meeting with department heads to develop better ways of dealing with future damaging storms.