Number of persons unaccounted-for following Joplin tornado has been reduced to 43, Missouri state public safety officials report. State officials release updated list of unaccounted-for individuals, and release names of 87 persons who died following May 22 EF-5 tornado

The Missouri Department of Public Safety this afternoon reported that the number of persons unaccounted-for as a result of the EF-5 tornado that devastated Joplin on May 22 now stands at 43, including four persons whose families have reported them as deceased.

On May 26, the department released a list of 232 individuals for whom an official missing persons report had been filed. More than 60 law-enforcement and emergency-management personnel, including Missouri State Highway Patrol troopers, State Emergency Management Agency staff, federal partners, and local detectives are working under the department’s direction on this top priority.

As of 12:30 p.m., the Missouri Department of Public Safety provided the following updated totals:

-- 43 persons are unaccounted for; this number includes four persons who have been reported deceased by family, but for whom official confirmation is still underway.

-- 137 persons have been reported located.

-- 31 additional missing persons reports have been filed.

-- 3 reports have been confirmed as duplicates.

Persons categorized as “reported located” are individuals who the Missouri State Highway Patrol has received credible information indicating that they are alive. Following the release and posting of the initial list on May 26, the Highway Patrol received many phone calls and e-mails that included credible information about the location of individuals. The Patrol is also monitoring postings on facebook and other social media sites. The Patrol and local police continue to pursue information to confirm the status of these individuals.

“Since Gov. Jay Nixon directed the Department of Public Safety to take charge of the process of locating unaccounted-for individuals, our 24-hour a day effort of working with local and federal partners, and the public, has resulted in reducing the number of unaccounted for individuals from 232 on May 26 to 43 currently,” said Department of Public Safety Deputy Director Andrea Spillars. “That is steady progress, but our objective continues to be reducing that number to zero, to help ease the anxiety of concerned loved ones. DPS and its agencies – the Highway Patrol and the State Emergency Management Agency – will continue to devote all available resources to this effort.”

Spillars said that those involved in the effort to account for all individuals are encouraged by the fact that 137 persons who were once unaccounted-for have now been reported to be located. The Missouri State Highway Patrol, local law enforcement and others continue to work to confirm each of these reports.

On Saturday, May 28, the department began reporting a new category – persons reported as deceased by their families, but for whom official confirmation by the local coroner and the federal Disaster Mortuary Operational Response Team is still underway. That number has now been reduced to four, as the identification process moves forward.

Spillars said the department is taking many steps to expedite the process of locating all of those who are unaccounted-for, including dispatching state troopers to notify families in a respectful and dignified manner, immediately after the identity has been confirmed by DMORT and the county coroner.

The names of unaccounted-for individuals are being cross-referenced with all hospitals that admitted or treated patients injured during the tornado, shelters housing tornado survivors, applicants for disaster assistance and the Red Cross Safe and Well program. Additionally, the Department of Public Safety is working with cell phone service providers to check whether cell phones have been used by individuals who have been unaccounted-for since their names were added to the list.

The unaccounted-for list is available on the Missouri Department of Public Safety Web site,, and will be updated daily.

As of 1:30 p.m. Sunday, May 29, the next-of-kin of 87 deceased individuals have been notified. The names of these deceased individuals are:

Miguel Alvarez, 28, Joplin

Sarah L. Anderson, 47, Joplin

Grace Aquino, 46, of Joplin

Robert W. Baker, 54, Joplin

Robert E. Bateson, 45, Joplin

Dorothy T. Bell, 88, Joplin

Regina M. Bloxham, 55, Joplin

Lathe E. Bradfield, 84, Joplin

Leo E. Brown, 86, Joplin

Hugh O. Buttram, 85, Joplin

Tami L. Campbell, 28, Joplin

Arriyinnah S. Carmona, 8, Joplin

Moises Carmona-Navarro, 42, Joplin

Shante M. Caton, 10, Joplin

Trenton Caton, 6, Pierce City

Raymond Chew, 66, Joplin

Carolane J. Collins, 62 Eagle Rock

Clyde Coleman, 72, Galena, Kan.

Lois A. Comfort, 66, Webb City

Keenan K. Conger, 49, Joplin

Vicki L. Cooper, 59, Joplin

Adam Darnaby, 27, Joplin

Nancy E. Douthitt, 94, Joplin

Ellen Doyle, 75, Joplin

Richard A. Elmore, 70, Joplin

Randy E. England, 34, Neosho

Betty Fisher, 86, Joplin

Marsha A. Frost, 32, Joplin

Sebastian C. Frost, 10, Joplin

Charles K. Gaudsmith, 21, Carthage

Billie J. Gideon, 77, Joplin

Paul E. Haddock, 63, Joplin

Caley Lantz Hare, 16, Joplin

Dorothy V. Hartman, 91, Joplin

Glenn W. Holland, 60, Joplin

Charlotte Hopwood, 84, Joplin

Hayze Howard, 1, Webb City

Harli Howard, 5, Webb City

Thomas Russell Howard, 29, Webb City

Melisa R. Johnson, 50, Carthage

Cheryl L. Jones, 39, Altamont, Kan.

James D. Kendrick, 63, Joplin

Bruce A. Lievens, 48, Joplin

Rachel K. Markham, 31, Joplin

Nancy Martin, 52, Neosho

Jesse L. McKee, 44, Neosho

Randall E. Mell, 49, Joplin

Ronald D. Meyer, 64, Joplin

Ray Donald Miller III, 49, Joplin

Doris Montgomery, 83, Joplin

Edmond V. Mullaney, 82, Joplin

Sharyl Nelsen, 34, Joplin

William R. Norton, 18, Joplin

Dennis M. Osborn, 34, Seneca

Charles E. Oster, 77, Joplin

Shirley Ann Parker, 68, Joplin

James B. Peterson, 27, Joplin

John H. Petty, 37, Neosho

Natalia M. Puebla, 17, Neosho

Shelly Marie Ramsey, 42, Neosho

Loretta Randell, 54, Joplin

Troy Raney, 39, Joplin

Virgil T. Reid, 77, Joplin

Johnny Richey, 52, Joplin

Vicki Robertson, 66, Joplin

Keith D. Robinson, 48, Joplin

Virginia Mae Salmon, 80, Joplin

Tonya L. Sawyer, 41, Fort Scott, Kan.

Frances A. Scates, 70, Joplin

Gladys J. Seay, 83, Welch, Okla.

Daniel W. Shirley, 48, Joplin

Judy Smith, 71, Joplin

Nicholaus A. Smith, 23, Joplin

Shyrell L. Smith, 68, Pittsburg, Kan.

Steven J. Stephens, 28, Joplin

Kayleigh Teal, 16, Pittsburg, Kan.

Heather L. Terry, 36, Joplin

John Thomas, Jr., 40, Joplin

Sandra K. Thomas, 55, Carthage

Margaret Tuit, 92, Joplin

Michael E. Tyndall, 33, Joplin

Darian D. Vanderhoofven, 45, Joplin

Joshua D. Vanderhoofven, 1, Joplin

Miles Wells, 49, Webb City

Tiera Whitley, 20, Fulton, Kan.

Zach Williams, 12, Joplin

Charles W. Writer, 74, Joplin

To help reduce the list of unaccounted-for individuals and speed the process of reuniting tornado survivors with loved ones, Spillars urged the public to call the Missouri State Highway Patrol Found-Persons Hotline: 417-895-6868.

To get direction on filing a report about an unaccounted-for individual, families and loved ones may call 417-659-5464 or file a report with the Highway Patrol in person at the Billingsley Student Center on the campus of Missouri Southern State University.

The Department of Public Safety will release a daily update of those individuals confirmed as deceased as a result of the tornado, following notification of next-of-kin. The updates will be available on the department Web site,