GATLINBURG, Tenn. — After nearly 24 hours of drenching rain helped quench a series of devastating wildfires in eastern Tennessee, local officials turned to cleanup and recovery efforts even as they battled their own personal crises.
Gatlinburg Mayor Mike Werner said discussions were under way about re-opening the resort city as early as Friday, which would give business owners and residents their first look at the damage in a city that has been closed since Monday night.
Werner has spent the better part of two days standing in front of TV cameras saying “everything is going to be OK,” all while he lost the home he built himself along with all seven buildings of the condominium business he owned.
“I really can’t dwell on it that much. I think of others that have lost theirs, and it keeps my mind off of our problems,” he said while fighting back …
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