35 Dead in Lee County After Hurricane Ian’s Rampage

Lee County Sheriff Carmine Marceno said Saturday that dozens more people have died because of what Hurricane Ian did to much of southwest Florida.

The sheriff said that his emergency response teams were hard at work figuring out how bad the damage was and continuing their search and rescue efforts.

“Today we’ve had over 600 to 700 rescues of people that are in need during this difficult time,” Marceno said, “With about 35 deaths, unfortunately.”

The sheriff said that his team is working to release information about the people who were killed but that it will take a long time before they can be named. Marceno didn’t know right away if all of the deaths were caused by the storm.

“Next of kin and family members have to be notified,” the sheriff added. Marceno said in a late-morning update on Saturday that people from all over the county and state have come together “as a whole” to help recover from the terrible hit.

“Everyone from our Governor Ron DeSantis to CFO Jimmy Patronis our Attorney General, sheriffs all over the state, have given manpower to us here in Lee County,” Marceno said. “what a blessing that is.”

“Last night I just sat there by myself thinking about the devastation, looking through pictures and I’ll tell you it brought tears to my eyes,” he added.

The sheriff saw a light at the end of the tunnel, though. “We are going to work harder and we are going to be stronger than ever. We are one big family together — that’s what makes us great.”

The sheriff said that his team will continue to “give this our all every single day” and that the community will come out “stronger than ever.”

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