Over 100 people are feared to be dead after a swarm of deadly tornadoes tore through central and southern U.S. states between December 11 and 12.
At least 50 twisters tore through a 200-mile path across Kentucky, Arkansas, Illinois, Missouri, Tennessee, Indiana, Ohio and Mississippi. Kentucky is believed to have been hit the worst by the tornadoes.
On Monday, Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear confirmed that at least 64 people died in his state following the deadly storms. According to poweroutage.us, more than 26,000 homes and businesses were experiencing power outages across Kentucky as of Monday morning.
“We’re going to have over 1,000 homes that are gone, just gone,” Beshear said.
The storms also destroyed a candle factory and fire and police stations in a small town in Kentucky.
According to the Associated Press, another 14 people died from the tornadoes in Illinois, Tennessee, Arkansas, and Missouri, including at least six Amazon workers killed in an Illinois warehouse.
Reuters reports that the tornadoes were spawned from a series of overnight thunderstorms, including a supercell storm that formed in Northeast Arkansas. The powerful storm moved through Arkansas before ripping through Missouri, Tennessee and Kentucky.
On Saturday, President Joe Biden approved an emergency declaration for Kentucky.
Evangelist Franklin Graham, the president of Samaritan’s Purse and the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association, said that BGEA chaplains have been deployed in response to the aftermath of the storms.
“The biggest need right now is spiritual,” Franklin Graham said in a statement. “We need men and women of God to go in there and to pray with people, put their arms around them, to comfort them, to love them.”
The chaplains were deployed in Mayfield, Kentucky, and Northeast Kansas, where the storms hit the hardest. Samaritan’s Purse also offered their assistance and sent two disaster response units with tractor-trailers full of equipment and supplies to Arkansas and Kentucky.
Photo courtesy: ©Getty Images/Scott Olson/Staff
Milton Quintanilla is a freelance writer. He is also the co-hosts of the For Your Soul podcast, which seeks to equip the church with biblical truth and sound doctrine. Visit his blog Blessed Are The Forgiven.