CHOWAN COUNTY -- Family members say 11-month-old Gavin Soto died Sunday, two days after a tornado brought his home down on top of him and his family.
His uncle, Richard Bain, who set up a Fundly page -- initially to help with medical costs -- wrote:
Just wanted to say thanks to everyone who sent thoughts, prayers and donations to my sister Ashley. Tragically my nephew passed away early Sunday morning. My family is crushed. I am really floored by how awesome my friends can be. Thanks for all your support.
Bain explained that Gavin was in a medically-induced coma prior to the baby's death.
Bain also said that the roof of his sister home on Yeopim Drive in Edenton collapsed on her (Ashley) as she tried to protect Gavin. His niece, Brylee, also was in the house when winds picked it up about 30 feet, then dropped it.
A stove hit the niece who crawled out to find a beam was on top of Gavin and his mother. The niece could not lift the beam, so she jumped out of a window, cutting her hand as she tried to get help. She found a relative who was able to move the beam.
Sunday, Governor Pat McCrory was in eastern North Carolina to tour areas damaged by the tornadoes Friday. The tour included Chowan County and Perquimans County in our area.
"It's like a hit-and-run driver came through and hit five counties and caused total destruction and just moved on, and we're so thankful there's not more loss of life," McCrory said, offering condolences to Gavin Soto's family.
Chowan County saw wind speeds of up to 125 miles per hour.
Governor McCrory also visited Beaufort County where a tornado with winds up to 150 miles per hour injured more than a dozen people and destroyed or heavily damaged 200 businesses.