Death toll from Joplin tornado now 142

The family of Will Norton, who was missing since Sunday's tornado in Joplin , Mo., when he was ejected or sucked out of a car, announced they have received confirmation of his death. CBS

Last UPdated 6:05 p.m. ET

JOPLIN, Mo. — The death toll from the monster tornado last week in Missouri has risen by three to at least 142, Joplin City Manager Mark Rohr said during a news conference Saturday. That makes this the deadliest year for tornadoes since 1950, based on an assessment of figures from the National Weather Service.

The state has been working to pare down the list of people missing and unaccounted for in the wake of the deadliest single U.S. twister in more than six decades.

It said Friday that the original list of 232 missing or unaccounted for residents had dropped to 156 by Friday, and planned to give an updated total later in the day.

Missouri Department of Public Safety deputy director Andrea Spillars said Friday that at least 90 people on the initial list had been located alive.


Video: Inside the ruins of a Joplin, Mo. Hospital
Photos: Joplin tornado aftermath
Joplin tornado: How you can help

City manager Mark Rohr acknowledged Friday afternoon that there may be "significant overlap" between the confirmed dead and the remainder of the missing list. Still, search and rescue crews were undeterred, with 600 volunteers and 50 dog teams out again across the city.

"We're going to be in a search and rescue mode until we remove the last piece of debris," Rohr said.

The tornado — an EF5 packing 200 mph winds — was the deadliest since 1950 and more than 900 people were injured. Tallying and identifying the dead and the missing has proven a complex, delicate and sometimes confusing exercise for both authorities and loved ones.

Earlier Saturday, a family member said that a teenager believed to be ejected or sucked from his father's car on the way home from graduation in the massive tornado has been confirmed dead.

Will Norton's aunt, Tracey Presslor, said Saturday that the family received confirmation of his death late Friday night.

Twister sucks grad into storm through sunroof

Family members had previously told The Associated Press that Norton and his father were still on the road when the storm hit. Mark Norton urged his son to pull over, but the teen's Hummer H3 flipped several times, throwing the young man from the vehicle, likely through the sunroof.

Several social-networking efforts specifically focused on finding information about Norton.

Comments

CBSN Live

pop-out
Live Video

Watch CBSN Live

Watch CBS News anytime, anywhere with the new 24/7 digital news network. Stream CBSN live or on demand for FREE on your TV, computer, tablet, or smartphone.