Loretta Lynn’s ranch foreman among those dead in Tennessee floods

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TENNESSEE (WJW/AP) — The ranch foreman of country music star Loretta Lynn is among the 22 dead after devastating flooding in Tennessee.

Loretta Lynn’s Ranch confirmed the news on Facebook, saying Wayne Spears was swept up in floodwaters.

It went on to say:

“Wayne has been a family friend to the Lynns and a fixture to the Ranch for decades and we are all devastated by his passing.The Ranch will never be the same without him but he will always be remembered for his ready smile, kind heart, and willingness to go the extra mile for everyone around him. Eventually we’ll rebuild our community, our ranch, our lives and our homes. but only God could build a man like Wayne Spears. There’s just no replacing that.”

Lynn herself took to Facebook with kind words about Spears.

She wrote: “Our ranch family is our family. We lost my amazing ranch foreman, Wayne in this devastating flood. He took such good care of things here on the ranch for us. He’s one of us and the whole Lynn family Is heartbroken. Please pray for his precious family and friends.”

A sheriff in Tennessee says at least 22 people are dead and many are missing after record-setting rain and flooding.

A Facebook page from officials in Waverly listed about 40 missing people Sunday afternoon. Humphreys County Sheriff Chris Davis said many of the missing were from neighborhoods hit hardest by Saturday’s flash flood.

The dead ranged in age from young children to elderly people. Up to 17 inches of rain fell in less than 24 hours, which set a new one-day record for rainfall in Tennessee.

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