U.S. Sen. Marsha Blackburn was in Mt. Juliet a day after a deadly Tennessee tornado killed four people in Wilson County.
There are 1,307 residential and commercial buildings in Wilson County that suffered damage from last week’s tornado, Wilson County Emergency Management Agency Director Joey Cooper said.
Lebanon had 778 of those structures with reported damage, and Mt. Juliet had 395. There were also 134 buildings in Wilson County outside those city limits with damage,Â according to numbers Cooper provided as one of several department heads who addressed a number of county commissioners Wednesday.
Wilson County had 170 structures that were destroyed and 201 more with with major damage, which he said is considered atÂ least 50% of the building.
An EF-3 tornado damaged more than 1,300 structures in Wilson County. (Photo: Larry McCormack / The Tennessean)
Wilson County remains in a state of emergency, Cooper said.
Wilson County Mayor Randall Hutto and other leaders praised the volunteer effort from churches, businesses, charity organizations and individuals in the ongoing cleanup efforts since the EF-3 tornado hit early March 3.
“The silver lining,” Hutto said of the cleanup effort.
“We will get over this quicker than most,” Wilson County Sheriff Robert Bryan said.
The Wilson County Emergency Management Agency transported 25 people to a medical facility after the tornado. It also also treated 91 persons,Â including 12 who went to a hospital, Cooper said.
There were three deaths in Wilson County from the tornado. James Eaton, 84, and Donna Eaton, 81, died at their home on Catalpa Drive in Mt. Juliet.Â Brandy Barker, 38, of Lebanon, was killed working security at theÂ CEVA Logistics warehouse on Athletes Way North.
Wilson County Director of Schools Donna Wright also spoke and estimated 11-12 employees had significant damage to their homes and six were injured as information continues to be gathered.
West Wilson Middle and Stoner Creek Elementary schools are closed for the rest of the school year because of extensive damage.Â SchoolÂ resumes Monday after spring break.
Stoner Creek will operate atÂ Springdale Elementary and West Wilson at Mt. Juliet Middle, with all four schools to operate at appointed shifts during the day that will be abbreviated for each.
The district also plans to make counseling available for students and families with homes in other school zones also experiencing damage from the tornado.
“Don’t minimize what these children have been through,” Wright said.
Wilson County will continue to provide information and updates related to specific needs in the recovery effort at www.wilsoncountytn.gov. Hutto’s Facebook account will also provide updates.
Mt. Juliet also plans an informational meeting at 6:30 p.m.Â Tuesday at Mt. Juliet High School, City Commissioner Ray Justice said.
Reach Andy Humbles at firstname.lastname@example.org orÂ 615-726-5939 and on Twitter @AndyHumbles.
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