President Trump on Friday, paid a visit to tornado-ravaged Tennessee to see things for himself, after two deadly tornadoes wrecked havoc through Nashville earlier this week.
President Donald Trump who is seeking to rebuild, landed in Nashville on Friday and from there departed by helicopter for Cookeville, in Putnam County, where 18 residents died and dozens more were injured in the destruction on Tuesday.
According to an earlier report, about 24 people were reported to have died from the two deadly tornadoes, which is reported to be the deadliest tornado day in 7 years.
All told across the state, authorities say at least 24 people died in the storms.
President Trump speaking on his visit, said:
“I have a message for the families of those that lost their lives: We love them. They’re special people. It’s an incredible place — incredible state, tremendous heart,” Trump told a news conference Friday in Cookeville, in front of the wreckage of a home. “Already you see people rebuilding.”
He was accompanied on his trip to Tennessee by members of the state’s congressional delegation, including the state’s two Republican senators, Marsha Blackburn and Lamar Alexander. Gov. Bill Lee was there to greet him when he arrived.
“It’s been a painful, tragic week for our state,” Lee said during the joint news conference with Trump, “but Tennesseans are hopeful.”
About 23,000 people in three counties remained without power and Tennessee remained under a state of emergency. Trump freed up federal funds for Putnam, Davidson and Wilson counties by declaring a major disaster in the state.
During the news conference Friday, the president tried to end on a hopeful note, recalling a story he had heard about a boy whom one tornado ripped from his home and deposited a couple of blocks away, relatively unharmed.
“And how did his parents do?” Trump asked the officials standing beside him.
“They were found deceased,” came the reply. “He was the only surviving member of the household. Lost his sibling as well” he said..