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Whitehouse residents share their stories of fear, rescue after storm

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Published: Apr. 5, 2022 at 8:50 AM CDT|Updated: Apr. 5, 2022 at 11:27 PM CDT

WHITEHOUSE, Texas (KLTV) - Whitehouse authorities have identified the man they believed to have died as a result of Tuesday morning’s storms.

W.M. Solomon, 71, died Tuesday morning inside his residence at Mobile Home and RV Park in Whitehouse. A tree crashed on the residence but an official cause of death has not yet been released.

“We lost a neighbor and a friend and a citizen of Whitehouse and we are mourning that loss,” said Whitehouse Mayor James Wansley.

More damage was extensive on Tomlin Street in Whitehouse.

The information was released at an afternoon press conference in Whitehouse where Fire Chief Madison Johnson provided updates regarding the state of power outages, road clearings and the general state of the city following the damage sustained during the storms.

Johnson said about 4,000 residences lost power but that as of time of the press conference, only about 1,700 remained without power and Oncor is “diligently working” to fully restore service. Additionally, Johnson said that the city sustained little to no infrastructure damage and that municipal operations are expected to be back running at 100 percent by Wednesday.

And while Johnson noted that there were no further fatalities or injuries beyond that of W.M. Solomon, he noted that there were about a dozen homes with significant damage.

Previous coverage follows:

One person in Whitehouse has died as a result of the Tuesday morning storms.

A man has died after a tree crashed into his mobile home in Whitehouse.
A man has died after a tree crashed into his mobile home in Whitehouse.(KLTV)

According to Smith County Fire Marshal Jay Brooks, emergency responders are trying to get access to the victim, as of 7 a.m.

A resident said the death was at Mobile Home and RV Park in Whitehouse, where a tree crashed a man’s home. The resident said the victim was one of the kindest people “you would ever meet and always had a smile on his face.”

A man has died after a tree crashed through his mobile home.
A man has died after a tree crashed through his mobile home.(KLTV)

“I am devastated that a life was lost during this event, and my prayers will be with the family of the lost and those displaced as we continue to work through this situation,” said Smith County Judge Nathaniel Moran in a statement Tuesday morning.

Smith County Engineer Frank Davis said Road and Bridge crews were called out around 3 a.m. and are still working to clear county roads. He said some downed trees are connected to power lines so those will take longer to clear since they have to wait on electric companies.

Davis said they are still assisting the City of Whitehouse with downed trees, but there are several trees down on county roads as well.

People in Smith County who have downed trees, please call the non-emergency dispatch at 903-566-6600 or Road and Bridge at 903-590-4801.

At least 21 roads in Smith County have trees down as of 9 a.m.

Here is a list of County Roads that have known downed trees:

CR 2166, CR 2221, CR 246, CR 290, CR 294, CR 2191, CR 2298, CR 2188, CR 490, CR 2138, CR 26, CR 251, CR 1155, CR 192, CR 223, CR 2290, CR 2294, CR 1274, CR 1100, CR 1125, and 1274.

A press conference will be held at 2 p.m.

More damage was extensive on Tomlin Street in Whitehouse.

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