Tags: Dolly Parton | tennessee | fires | breaking | heart

Dolly Parton: Fires Back Home in Tennessee Breaking Her Heart

Image: Dolly Parton: Fires Back Home in Tennessee Breaking Her Heart

Dolly Parton. (mpi04/MediaPunch/IPX via AP)

By    |   Thursday, 01 Dec 2016 11:23 AM

Tennessee wildfires have left country music legend Dolly Parton heartbroken after killing three people and forcing as many as 14,000 to flee the Great Smoky Mountains area where she grew up.

As smoke cleared, hundreds of homes and businesses were gone and tens of thousands of acres scorched.

"I am praying for all the families affected by the fire and the firefighters who are working so hard to keep everyone safe," Parton said on her website. "It is a blessing that my Dollywood theme park, the DreamMore Resort and so many businesses in Pigeon Forge have been spared."

Visitors to Dollywood were evacuated from the park, which was decorated for the holidays, Inside Edition reported. The park will reopen on Dec. 2, according to Parton's website.

Great Smoky Mountains National Park released a 30-second video Sunday featuring Parton and Smokey Bear urging people to prevent forest fires, The Associated Press noted.

The video was released days before 90 mph wind gusts forced harrowing evacuations in the tourism towns of Gatlinburg and Pigeon Forge, according to USA Today.

The fire covered 15,000 acres after embers from a wildfire on nearby Chimney Tops Trail blew into Gatlinburg, USA Today said. The fire's cause wasn't known.

"In my 25 years of federal (park) service, I've participated in many fires, but none of that could have prepared me for this," Park Superintendent Cassius Cash said, according to USA Today.

At least 150 buildings were destroyed in Gatlinburg, the AP said.

"It's a devastating time for us and for Gatlinburg," Mayor Mike Werner, who lost his home in the fire, said at a news conference Tuesday, per the AP. "As I said earlier this morning, we're strong. We're resilient. And we're going to make it. We're going to pull it together and continue to make Gatlinburg the premier resort that it is."

Search and rescue efforts were ongoing in some areas cut off by downed power lines and trees.

Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam called the fire the largest in the state in the past 100 years and said work would begin to repair the damage, according to the AP.

"There was fire everywhere. It was like we were in hell," Linda Monholland, who was working at Park View Inn in Gatlinburg when she and five other people fled on foot, told the AP. "Walking through hell, that's what it was. I can't believe it. I never want to see something like that again in my life, ever."

President-elect Donald Trump posted about the fires on Twitter.

 

 

The fires sparked sympathy elsewhere on Twitter.

 

© 2017 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

   
1Like our page
2Share
TheWire
Tennessee wildfires have left country music legend Dolly Parton heartbroken after killing three people and forcing as many as 14,000 to flee the Great Smoky Mountains area where she grew up.
Dolly Parton, tennessee, fires, breaking, heart
558
2016-23-01
Thursday, 01 Dec 2016 11:23 AM
Newsmax Inc.
 

Newsmax, Moneynews, Newsmax Health, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, and Newsmax World are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

NEWSMAX.COM
America's News Page
© Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved