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(via AP)

Vicious storms and howling winds smacked the Deep South, killing at least seven people in Alabama including three family members whose homes were tossed into nearby woods.

In Alabama’s Washington County, about 50 miles north of Mobile, a mother and her two children were among those killed, said state emergency management agency director Art Faulkner.

Combined with earlier reported fatalities in Arkansas and Oklahoma, the confirmed death toll had risen to 16 by early Saturday – the nation’s deadliest storm of the season.

Henley Hollon said Saturday that his 65-year-old brother, Willard Hollon, lived across the street from him in the Boone’s Chapel community about 25 miles from Montgomery. Henley Hollon said Willard Hollon and Willard’s two adult children, Steve and Cheryl, were killed when the storms roared through. 

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Southern states were hit by a line of severe storms that spawned at least one tornado causing extensive damage and multiple injuries.

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Southern states were hit by a line of severe storms that spawned at least one tornado causing extensive damage and multiple injuries.

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Southern states were hit by a line of severe storms that spawned at least one tornado causing extensive damage and multiple injuries.