A heartbreaking tragedy unfolded in Tennessee as a 10-year-old boy, Arlan Burnham, was identified among the six victims who lost their lives in devastating tornadoes on Saturday. Arlan perished when his two-story home in Clarksville collapsed during the destructive storm, leaving the community in shock, Clarksville Now and ABC affiliate WKRN-TV reported.
Neighbor Billy Urban, showing immense bravery, managed to rescue Arlan’s sister, Ella, from the debris, but Arlan did not survive. Arlan’s mother, Katherine Burnham, shared the devastating news on Facebook, expressing the family’s profound grief and the difficulty of navigating through the tragedy.
A GoFundMe campaign initiated by Kyle Burnham’s coworker, Brian Burkeen, aims to assist the family with funeral expenses and the reconstruction of their home. Kyle expressed gratitude for the overwhelming support the family has received during this unimaginably challenging time.
The fundraiser has raised over $129,000 as of Monday morning, reflecting the outpouring of compassion and solidarity. In Clarksville, additional casualties were reported. Floridana Gabriel Perez, 31, her 2-year-old son Anthony Elmer Mendez, and Joseph Dalton, 37, lost their lives in Madison when Dalton’s mobile home overturned onto Perez’s during the storm.
The aftermath of the tornado has left over 18,000 homes and businesses without power in Tennessee, exacerbating the challenges for affected families. With temperatures expected to remain below 50 degrees, the situation remains dire, per The Tennessean and the New York Post.
Montgomery County Emergency Services Director Jimmie Edwards acknowledged the profound suffering of families who have lost loved ones and everything they owned, emphasizing the heavy hearts within the community, according to CNN.
The road to recovery is described as long and arduous, marked by emotional and financial struggles. The tragic events have united the community in offering support and assistance to those affected, illustrating the resilience and compassion of the human spirit in the face of adversity.