‘We’re not going anywhere’: Gov. Andy Beshear visits Letcher County, updates flooding death toll

Weekday broadcast of WYMT Mountain News at 6
Published: Aug. 10, 2022 at 1:22 PM EDT
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EASTERN KENTUCKY (WYMT) - Governor Andy Beshear confirmed the death toll from the flooding in Eastern Kentucky is officially 38 as of Wednesday.

Weekday broadcast of WYMT Mountain News First at Four

The Governor said the 38th victim was the high school football player who died while helping cleanup efforts.

”Sadly, our death count went up. Officially we are now confirming thirty eight because we lost a young man in the clean up,” he said. “We’ve already reached out and will be helping his family with funeral expenses, and we grieve with him, and each one of the thirty eight individuals that are lost.”

Beshear was also in Letcher County to visit the hard-hit Neon Community on Wednesday. He met with victims and volunteers in the area to see the relief efforts.

“As you can see in this community we have a lot of work to do, but I know everybody in this building is proud of how far we’ve come,” said Beshear. “We’ve gone from about 25,000 homes without electricity to under 300.”

He also offered word of encouragement as the community rebuild moves forward.

“We’re gonna be able to move from emergency to stabilization and the rebuilding because we got a whole lot of people that love their home, and we’ve got to make sure they get back up on their feet,” said the Governor.

He also thanked the people who were willing to dive right in and make sure Kentuckians in the region were safe and taken care of.

“I’m so proud of the national guard,” said Beshear. “We just saw them down the street. They made of 1300 air rescues, KSP made over 700 boat rescues, but Kentuckians and neighbors rescued more people than that.”

The Fleming-Neon Mayor, Susan Polis shared the Governor’s message of encouragement and thanks.

“We’re encouraged every day,” said Polis. “Every day I get up and I drive up this street to this building right here. I’m encouraged because it’s looking up.. it’s looking up. We’ve got much more to do and this man right here said we were gonna do it. So, I’m going to take him at his word. I want to thank everybody that has come into our little town and our little portion of this county and offered to help. Overwhelming, heartwarming in the same sentence.”

Governor Beshear left the area with a promise that he, and so many other people, are not going anywhere while there is work to be done.

“We’re not going anywhere until every structure, every life, every town is built.”

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