Freak snow storm

A telephone pole splintered from ice and snow after a winter storm Oct. 30, in Hartsville, Penn. (CNN)

More than 2.4 million people in at least five states were without power early Monday, a day after a rare October snowstorm buried parts of the Northeast under more than two feet of snow.

Authorities blamed at least six deaths on the storm.

The Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority, or MBTA, warned riders that the storm could affect the Monday morning commute. And with the chilly temperatures and piles of snow, Halloween plans were touch-and-go for many cities.

Worcester, Massachusetts, asked residents to postpone celebrations until Thursday, when temperatures are expected to climb to 60 degrees.

"Safety doesn't take a holiday. Halloween tomorrow night will put families and our youth in harm's way as they negotiate piles of snow and downed limbs," the city said Sunday night.

Some of the heaviest snow fell in Massachusetts, Connecticut, New Jersey and New York, but snowfall amounts of at least a foot were recorded from West Virginia to Maine. The Berkshire County community of Peru, Massachusetts, received 32 inches of snow during the storm.

"I never have seen this and I've lived here all my life, and that's more than 90 years," 92-year-old Genevieve Murphy of Westfield, Massachusetts, said in an interview with CNN affiliate WWLP-TV.

Aaron Kershaw in Mahopac, New York, about 50 miles north of Manhattan, told CNN he was using a 4,000-watt generator to provide power for his family of five.

The wet, heavy snow brought down a number of trees while coating the area in a think blanket of white.

"Thank God no homes, cars, people etc. were harmed," he said. "But Mother Nature left us beautiful scenery."

With no electricity and no heat, Jessica Taylor took her six children and spent the night in a shelter in the Hartford, Connecticut, area.

"We've been eating meals here," she told CNN affiliate WTIC-TV. "They've been serving us, taking good care of us."

Connecticut power officials told reporters Monday that about 748,500 people were without power, down from a peak of more than 900,000.

"It's all hands on deck," Mitch Gross, a spokesman Connecticut Light and Power, the state's largest utility, said earlier. "We have a lot of work to do."

Power crews from across the country are converging on the state to help restore power, according to Gross, who said every town Connecticut Light and Power serves was adversely affected in some way by the storm.

Elsewhere, about 202,000 customers were without power early Monday in Pennsylvania; 527,500 in Massachusetts; 275,000 in New Jersey; 286,000 in New York and 191,000 in New Hampshire, according to figures from emergency managers and power companies in those states. Thousands also lost power in Maryland, Virginia and West Virginia.

Kimberly Lindner, of Chappaqua, New York, said the family whiled away the hours by building a "jack-snow-lantern."

"It's October and there are 12 inches of snow on the ground," she said in a submission to CNN's iReport. "But the kids think it's great. They've been playing outside all day and really don't care that there is no power. Why not make the best of things and have some family time in the snow? A snowman without a head, a jack-o'-lantern without a body... enough said."

For others, however, the unexpected storm brought unexpected misery.

Forty-eight passengers were stuck in an Amtrak train for nearly 13 hours when a rock slide blocked the tracks late Saturday night, the transit service said. A bus was later sent to pick up the passengers.