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Arkansas communities work together to clean up after deadly storms

As family and friends worked to clean up around their homes, energy crews worked around them putting up new poles for electric lines.

LEACHVILLE, Ark — Today is the second day of clean up efforts in Monette and Leachville -- two areas hit the hardest this weekend by a tornado. 

Cesar Marroquin in Monette said for more than 30 minutes, five adults, three kids and two puppies fit inside a small weather shelter outside his home when the storm hit. He's just glad they're now safe and sound.

"All my family and friends came yesterday to help me clean all this. It's been pretty rough in here. This is the first time that we really went through a tornado. We didn't know if this thing was going to hold or not," said Marroquin.

He said the sounds were like an airplane with popping sounds all around him.

He didn't know if there were pieces of debris hitting his truck or shop structure outside his home. He just knows he heard the sounds of the storms.

As family and friends worked around him to clean what's left of his home, energy crews worked around them putting up new poles for electric lines. 

The Red Cross was at the nursing home to assess the damage.

With winds strong enough to knock over street lamps, the tornado destroyed local homes and businesses. 

"We've got our fire departments out here. We've got 25 crew members that's been out. The police department's been out. Everybody has stepped up to try to protect our town and everything," said Leachville Mayor Rodney Robertson. 

He said with families in need and crews working around the clock to clean up, he wanted to make sure they felt supported.

"We've got a lot of churches, a lot of people from out of town, other churches and other committees just bringing food to Leachville to keep everybody fed," said Robertson.

Entergy Arkansas said under 2,500 of their customers were without electricity in the state after the storm hit.

"The process is that you do the work first that gets the largest number of customers on the fastest and you work your way down from there," said Davis Lewis with Entergy.

"We're just trying to keep them comfortable and trying to keep some help where we don't run them to death," said Robertson.

    

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