'Dad will watch over you up there': 2-month-old Oaklynn Koon is youngest Kentucky tornado victim
The youngest victim of the Kentucky tornado has been identified as 2-month-old Oaklynn Koon. The baby succumbed to her injuries on Monday, December 13. Her devastated parents, Douglas and Jackie, shared the news in a Facebook post. "At least I know who will be watching over you up there for me. My dad. God this doesn’t seem real," they wrote.
Her family confirmed her death shortly before Kentucky Gov Andy Beshear released official death toll numbers for the state. At least 74 people are dead and over 100 are missing after the tornadoes hit. Following the deadly tornado ravaging her hometown of Dawson Springs last week, an injured Koon spent two days in the hospital. She suffered multiple seizures in the hospital, her parents confirmed. She is believed to have suffered a stroke. Also struck was an Amazon facility where at least six workers lost their lives.
“It’s not looking good guys at all. The machines are keeping her alive. Her head swelled really bad. She doesn’t have activity,” her parents said just hours before confirming her death. “I’m in shock, my heart feels absolutely shattered. We love you Oakie.”
When the tornado hit, Koon was strapped into her car seat, inside a bathroom with her parents and brother. The family said they were sent “flying” from the force of the tornado and ended up at a neighbor’s home. Both Koon and her brother Dallas had to be hospitalized, but Dallas was later released.
A series of destructive tornadoes and storms swept across as many as five states -- Kentucky, Illinois, Arkansas, Tennessee, and Missouri in the past few days. The storms injured numerous people and the death toll is expected to rise to over 100. As a result of the storms, more than 2,00,000 customers remained without power as of Saturday morning, December 11, in Tennessee and Kentucky.
Etheria S. Hebb, 34; Deandre S. Morrow, 28, of St. Louis, Mo.; Kevin D. Dickey, 62, of Carlyle, Ill.; Clayton Lynn Cope, 29, of Alton, Ill.; Larry E. Virden, 46, of Collinsville, Ill.; and Austin J. McEwen, 26, of Edwardsville, IIll, died when the deadly tornado struck at Amazon's Edwardsville facility. According to officials, the roof of the Amazon warehouse was taken off by the storm. Besides those killed, dozens of employees were trapped inside the building. The storm destroyed the entire southern portion of the warehouse. “About half of it’s missing, it’s gone,” Edwardsville Fire Department Mark Mayfield said.