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Winter's Coming And Thousands Are Homeless After Tornadoes

One of the homes destroyed in Washington, Ill., by Sunday's storms.
Tasos Katopodis
Getty Images
One of the homes destroyed in Washington, Ill., by Sunday's storms.

Along with the stories of incredible destruction and heart-breaking losses, Tuesday's reports about the aftereffects of Sunday's tornadoes in Illinois, Michigan, Indiana and other parts of the Midwest make this ominous point:

On 'Morning Edition': 'Midwest Tornadoes Send Residents Scrambling'

"[The] unfortunate thing is this thing hit in November," Mayor Gary Manier of Washington, Ill., said Tuesday on Morning Edition. "November is not the construction season that we build homes in this part of our state and part of our country."

According to NPR's David Schaper, "the American Red Cross has opened shelters for residents of the affected areas. But authorities estimate thousands of homes were destroyed or were left uninhabitable by the storm, producing a great need for longer term housing."

At least eight people — six of them in Illinois — died from injuries suffered as dozens of twisters touched down. Tuesday's headlines tell more of the story:

-- " 'It's all gone': Midwest communities weigh costs of deadly tornadoes." ( NBC News)

-- " 'Devastation is just unbelievable' from historic tornadoes." ( Chicago Tribune)

-- "Indiana storm victims sort out their lives." ( Indianapolis Star)

-- "130,000 without power in metro Detroit, crews working 'around the clock.' " ( Detroit Free Press)

How to help: The Federal Emergency Management Agency has guidance posted here about how to "volunteer & donate responsibly."

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Mark Memmott is NPR's supervising senior editor for Standards & Practices. In that role, he's a resource for NPR's journalists – helping them raise the right questions as they do their work and uphold the organization's standards.