David Banner has issued an impassioned plea for the hip-hop community to band together to help Mississippi Delta residents whose lives were devastated by an EF-4 tornado on March 24.
Winds that reached 170 mph tore through parts of Silver City, which has an estimated population of 337 people, and Rolling Fork, which is home to roughly 2,000 people. According to CNN, at least 26 people were killed by the storms that left a trail of wreckage behind.
On March 28, Banner posted a video to Instagram showing debris and scattered remnants of the residents’ belongings. “My state has been hit with some terrible, terrible weather, and in the area of Rolling Fork, Mississippi,” he began.
He said the sight was eerily similar to the devastation of New Orleans, Louisiana when the levees broke during a hurricane in 2005. “I watched something very similar happen during Katrina … a lot of people died,” added Banner. “They need help. They need support, but they also need the light to be shined all over the world.”
The “Get Like Me” rapper hails from Brookhaven, Mississippi, located just two hours south of Rolling Fork, which endured the bulk of the tornado’s force. He continued, “People have used hip-hop historically for, you know, a lot of crazy reasons. This an opportunity for us to keep the light on people who really, really need your help.”
In his caption, the “Ride Along” actor said his thoughts and prayers were with the families who are left picking up the pieces of their lives.
“There are many communities, in addition to Rolling Fork, that were totally devastated by the storm but may not be receiving the same amount of news coverage. It’s important that we all show up to support them and ensure they receive the disaster relief and aid they need,” he wrote.
The state suffered additional damages and fatalities from two EF-3 tornadoes that struck Carroll, Montgomery, and Monroe counties and four EF-1 tornadoes that were recorded across the state.