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Local Red Cross sends aid after midwest and southern Friday storms, asks for donations

“We had to, at times, crawl over casualties to get to live victims," a Kentucky fire chief and EMS director said. Now, help from the DMV is on the way.

WASHINGTON — The damage out of Kentucky and other states is devastating, and that’s why our local Red Cross is stepping in to help.

In Kentucky alone, 22 were confirmed dead by Saturday afternoon, according to the Associated Press. Kentucky Gov. Andy Beshear predicts that upwards of 70 may have been killed after a twister touched down for more than 200 miles in his state and that the number of deaths could eventually exceed 100 across 10 or more counties.  

“We had to, at times, crawl over casualties to get to live victims,” said Jeremy Creason, a local fire chief and EMS director, the Associated Press reported.

Given the level of destruction, it's no wonder our local Red Cross is stepping up to give aid. "We help to make sure people have safe shelter. We also make sure people have warm food and water,” The Red Cross’ Ashley Henyan said while sharing that they’re currently mobilizing volunteers. 

The death toll of 36 across five states includes six people in Illinois, where an Amazon facility was hit; four in Tennessee; two in Arkansas, where a nursing home was destroyed; and two in Missouri. If early reports are confirmed, according to the Associated Press, the twister “will likely go down perhaps as one of the longest track violent tornadoes in United States history,” said Victor Genzini, a researcher on extreme weather at Northern Illinois University.

Due to the widespread damage, the Red Cross plans to help out everyone who now finds themselves in need. Henyan said that volunteers’ training spans from disaster mental health and emotional support to even spiritual care.

The need for blood also raises after massive storms and getting donations in a disaster zone is often impossible.

“There’s actually 160 pints of blood we supplied to help those we know are impacted by these storms. So that’s where people in D.C., Northern Virginia, Montgomery County and across the entire DMV can join in and help by rolling up their sleeves and giving blood right now,” she said. 

There are plenty of places across the metro region where you can donate blood, money or time to the red cross. Learn more by clicking here.

 RELATED: Roof ripped off Amazon warehouse in Illinois

RELATED: The American Red Cross experiencing severe blood shortage

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