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Seven of the Most Devastating Hurricane Michael Photos

Here's what our fellow Americans in the Southeast are up against as the death toll from this storm keeps climbing

Hurricane Michael — later classified as a tropical storm and now a post-tropical cyclone over the Atlantic Ocean — made landfall in Florida this past Wednesday at about 1:30 p.m., but the vast scope of the damage in that state and in other areas is still only beginning to come into sharp focus.

“Dawn [on Thursday] in Panama City, Florida, revealed a sprawling mess of almost unimaginable devastation wrought by the third-most powerful hurricane in recorded history to lash the U.S. mainland,” as Fox News reported.

The White House declared Thursday that “a major disaster exists in the state of Florida” — and President Donald Trump “ordered federal aid to supplement state and local recovery efforts in the areas affected by Hurricane Michael,” according to a release. This means federal funding is available to those affected in the counties of Bay, Franklin, Gulf, Taylor, and Wakulla.

The storm rumbled into South Carolina, while also bringing strong winds and heavy rains to North Carolina and Virginia amid a tornado threat, many news outlets reported. The storm hit the Florida Panhandle and southwest Georgia hard and continued on into the Southeast — and on Friday officials said the death toll had climbed to 14 people; that number rose to 18 on Saturday.

Officials in Virginia said five fatalities there were tied to the storm, according to the New York Post and other sources.

Scroll through these seven unforgettable photos — as Americans of all ages begin picking up the pieces — and find out how to help, below.

This article has been updated.

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LifeZette's managing editor and chief editor Maureen Mackey can be reached at [email protected].