November 12, 2011 / 4:11 PM / 7 years ago

Joplin tornado death toll revised down to 161

KANSAS CITY, Mo (Reuters) - The death toll from the May 22 tornado in Joplin, Missouri has been revised down to 161 with the discovery that one assumed victim died of other causes.

The city said in a statement that Kenneth J. Henson, a resident of Ottawa County, Oklahoma, did not die in the tornado. Jasper County Coroner Rob Chappel discovered the error while he was helping other officials compile a list of tornado victims for a six-month memorial service, the city said.

“Through this recent review, we are confident that the current list of 161 is accurate,” the city said. The city gave no explanation for the Henson mix-up, and Chappel could not be immediately reached for comment Saturday.

The tornado, one of the deadliest in U.S. history, destroyed some 900 homes and other buildings. The death toll grew over several months as people died of their lingering injuries.

Editing by Greg McCune

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