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All missing accounted for in Kentucky following tornadoes, governor says

At least 76 people have been confirmed dead in Kentucky from tornadoes and storms that hit several states last week, according to an NBC News tally.
Image: Mike Castle hugs his daughter after the tornado in Dawson Springs
Mike Castle hugs his daughter Nikki Castle after tornados tore through the area in Dawson Springs, Ky., on Dec. 11, 2021.Minh Connors / USA Today Network via Reuters

All of the people reported missing in the deadly tornadoes that swept through Kentucky last week have been accounted for, Gov. Andy Beshear said Saturday.

Beshear had said Thursday that the number of people unaccounted for in the state was at just over a dozen, down from more than 100 earlier in the week.

“Right now, missing persons based on this tornado event are at zero," Beshear said at the beginning of a briefing Saturday.

Beshear hailed the news, which he received from state emergency management officials, and said he hoped it meant no additional people in Kentucky would be found dead from the storm.

At least 91 people have been confirmed dead, including 76 in Kentucky, from tornadoes and storms that also pummeled Arkansas, Tennessee, Illinois and Missouri last weekend, according to an NBC News tally.

“We mourn with their families,” Beshear said Saturday.

Help from the Federal Emergency Management Agency had been extended to six additional counties and that relief benefits provided for funeral expenses have been increased to $10,000, according to Beshear.

Some homes remain without power or are under boil water advisories and 944 Kentuckians have been given shelter in hotels or state parks. Applications were being accepted in 14 Kentucky counties for disaster unemployment assistance.

Last weekend's storm put the spotlight on questionable labor practices at a candle factory after a monstrous tornado tore through the building, killing eight workers and injuring many more.

Five employees told NBC News that supervisors threatened to fire as many as 15 people who wanted to leave work as the tornado approached.

A lawsuit filed Wednesday on behalf of some of the workers alleges the company showed “flagrant indifference” to them the night of the tornado. The lawsuit seeks compensatory and punitive damages.