UPDATE: We just served our first meals for lunch in Dallas in response to the EF-3 tornado and also will be serving dinner THIS EVENING. And now that our team is on the ground, it is clear that the damage from the storm was more extensive than the national news has reported. First, the tornado -- with winds up to 140MPH -- hit a heavily populated area of North Dallas as evidenced from this night photo taken by the Dallas Police Department Helicopter Unit that shows the extensive power outages along the path of the storm.

The initial phase of any deployment is always the most critical and the most costly. Your financial support right now will help us reach victims and volunteers while maximizing the impact of our outreach. Go here to make your best tax-deductible gift to help Mercy Chefs respond to the Dallas tornado and continue other efforts. And see below for more details.

Thanks and God bless!

Gary LeBlanc, Mercy Chefs

P.S. For 30 minutes, this EF-3 tornado cut a path through a heavily populated section of North Dallas. Many homes and buildings have damage like the ones pictured below. Again, we just served our first meals TODAY and we could use your help right now as we launch this deployment. Go here to help:

Aerial photo source.

Click here for more information from our previous update.