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Officials: Death Toll Rises in Joplin Now 138

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A woman exits her destroyed home in Joplin, Missouri on May 24, 2011. The tornado that hit Joplin on May 22 has claimed 122 lives and is now the deadliest single U.S. tornado in about 60 years. UPI/Tom Uhlenbrock

A woman exits her destroyed home in Joplin, Missouri on May 24, 2011. The tornado that hit Joplin on May 22 has claimed 122 lives and is now the deadliest single U.S. tornado in about 60 years. UPI/Tom Uhlenbrock

JOPLIN, Mo. (AP) — Missouri officials say the death toll from the massive May 22 Joplin tornado has risen to 138 people.

The state Department of Public Safety announced the increase from 134 to 138 on Thursday after confirming that four more people died in hospitals of injuries suffered in deadliest single U.S. tornado since 1950.

More than 8,000 homes and apartments, and more than 500 commercial properties, were damaged or destroyed when the twister ripped through more than six miles of the southwest Missouri town.

Officials say everyone reported missing after the tornado hit has either been located or confirmed to have died. Some remain hospitalized.

Copyright 2011 The Associated Press

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