We Energies crews working in Puerto Rico return home to powerful reunion

Posted at 6:20 PM, Mar 09, 2018
and last updated 2018-03-09 19:20:08-05

We Energies crews returned home Friday to a powerful homecoming after working to restore power in Puerto Rico since January.  Families were reunited at Mitchell International Airport Friday.

"I'm excited.  I'm happy to see him, glad he made it home safely," said Britney Sobbe, wife.

This is the longest Tony Stobbe has ever been away from his kids, but his wife knew he needed to go to Puerto Rico.

"I told him to sign up.  I said you're going there with no questions asked," said Stobbe.

Workers with We Energies and Wisconsin Public Service initially went down to work for six weeks and ended up staying for eight.  Stobbe's dad and father-in-law, former energy workers, are beyond proud. 

"We have so much pride about what the guys did down there, how they did it safely," said Mark Throndson, father-in-law.

Puerto Ricans in Milwaukee helped welcome home the team with cheers and song.  

"I'm really glad to be supporting these people," said Luz Rabell, family in Puerto Rico.

Strangers and families bonded over the crews' hard work.  

"He told me these men would be our hero forever because they put the electricity back on," said Wendy Stobbe, mom.

This was an experience workers like Stobbe will never forget.

"To see the faces light up when the lights came on it was all worth it," said Tony Stobbe, worker. 

When the workers arrived in Puerto Rico in January 50 percent of the power was back on the island and now more than 90 percent of power has been restored.