Horror moment Loretta Lynn’s ranch worker clings to beam in Tennessee floods before swept to death as 22 now killed

HORRIFYING pictures show a ranch worker of country singer Loretta Lynn desperately clinging to a wooden beam before being swept away to his death in flash floods.

At least 22 people are dead as small towns in Tennessee were pummeled Storm Henri.

Ranch worker Wayne Spears clung on to a wooden beam before being swept away by floodwater in Tennessee
Loretta Lynn’s ranch worker was checking on the animals in the barn

Cops said Wayne Spears was checking on the animals in the barn when he was killed on Saturday.

Pictures show his arms wrapped around the beam before he was swept away.

Lynn, 89, said she was heartbroken following the death of her ranch worker Spears, USA Today reports.

She posted on Facebook last night: “There are no words at the ranch today…only tears. Our ranch family is our family.

“We lost my amazing ranch foreman, Wayne in this devastating flood. He took such good care of things here on the ranch for us.

“He’s one of us and the whole Lynn family is heartbroken. Please pray for his precious family and friends.”

Friends of Wayne have paid tribute to the ranch worker.

Michael Pate, who met Spears 15 years ago, said: “Wayne’s just one of those guys, he just does everything for everybody if there’s a job to do.”

Read our Hurricane Henri live blog for the latest updates

In a Facebook post, the ranch said they will remember Wayne for his “ready smile, kind heart, and willingness” to help others.

The tragedy comes as at least 22 people are dead and 50 are reported missing in Tennessee.

Twin babies who were swept from their father’s arms are among the fatalities.

Ryan and Riliegh Rigney, both seven months old, were killed during heavy flooding in Waverly on Saturday, Fox17 reports.

Angie Caron, the twins’ grandmother, said the force of the water tore the babies from their dad’s arms.

Search and recovery efforts are ongoing but authorities fear that the death toll is much higher.

About 17 inches of rain fell in the county in a 24-hour period, shattering previous records.

DEVASTATION

The flooding in rural areas took out roads, cellphone towers, and telephones lines, making communication between missing family members difficult.

A clean-up operation is underway as the flooding left behind wrecked buildings, cars, and homes.

Meanwhile, Tropical Storm Henri made landfall around midday on Sunday in New England, bringing flooding and power outages to several areas along the East Coast.

New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy said that power was out in about 4,500 homes in the state as several counties were hit with heavy rains over the weekend.

Motorists were stranded in cars and nursing homes in Massachusetts had to be evacuated as the storm hit.

Around 135,000 customers from New Jersey to Maine were without power, according to the New York Times.

President Biden approved emergency declarations for Rhode Island, Connecticut, and New York on Sunday.

Almost five inches of rain fell at Central Park in New York on Saturday night.

The rainfall disrupted rail services in Long Island and hundreds of flights from New York airports were canceled.

AP
Towns in Tennessee have been devastated by floods[/caption]
AP
Search and rescue operations are underway as at least 50 people are missing[/caption]


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