- Associated Press - Saturday, January 18, 2014

JOPLIN, Mo. (AP) - Joplin has recognized a retiring Federal Emergency Management Agency official who directed much of FEMA’s response to the 2011 tornado.

The Joplin Globe reports (http://bit.ly/1cG4ij3 ) Mayor Melodee Colbert-Kean presented a proclamation Friday to Richard Serino, deputy FEMA administrator. According to the proclamation, Serino made the visit to Joplin one of his last official acts before retiring Jan. 23.

Serino arrived in Joplin the morning after the tornado to assess what federal assistance would be needed in the wake of the EF-5 storm that hit Joplin, Duquesne and rural areas of Jasper and Newton counties and resulted in 161 deaths.

The city also held a ceremony to honor Serino during a tour of the a Fire Station that replaced one of the city’s two fire stations destroyed by the tornado.

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Information from: The Joplin (Mo.) Globe, http://www.joplinglobe.com