The Washington Times - May 24, 2011, 08:59AM

President Obama said he will visit Missouri on Sunday to tour the devastation wrought by a tornado that killed more than 116 people in Joplin over the weekend.

Mr. Obama, speaking to reporters in London as he continues a weeklong European trip, said he wants to make sure those affected know that “the entire country is going to be behind them.”


“So far, we know that over 100 people lost their lives. Others remain missing, and hundreds more remain injured. And obviously, our thoughts and prayers are with the families who are suffering at this moment,” Mr. Obama said. “All we can do is let them know that all of America cares deeply about them and that we are going to do absolutely everything we can to make sure that they recover.”

Mr. Obama spoke Tuesday with Missouri Gov. Jay Nixon as well as Federal Emergency Management Agency chief Craig Fugate, whom he dispatched to Missouri.

The tornado that ripped through Joplin on Sunday was one of the deadliest to strike the nation in more than 60 years. Emergency responders have been working around the clock to rescue survivors from the rubble.

The city, located in the southwest part of the state, has a population of about 50,000 people.