Barack Obama Reacts To Deadly Wildfires Devastating His Home State

The death toll from multiple blazes on Maui is expected to rise.

At least 55 people died by Thursday (Aug. 10) and the historic town of Lahaina, once the capital of the Hawaiian Kingdom, was nearly destroyed by wildfires ravishing Hawaii’s Maui island.

Former President Barack Obama reacted on social media to the devastation in his home state and informed people how they could help:

Reuters reports that the fires started Tuesday night (Aug. 8) from undetermined sources. Natural causes could stem from lightning and volcanic activity, as the Hawaiian Islands are home to six active volcanoes, including one on Maui. High winds and dry conditions have made it worse.

"What we saw is likely the largest natural disaster in Hawaii state history," Hawaii Gov. Josh Green said at an Aug. 10 news conference, adding that "hundreds of homes" have been destroyed, according to CBS News.

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Officials said the death toll and the number of mission people could increase in the coming days from the four fires that are not under control.

"None of the fires are 100% contained right now. Additionally, we have many small fires in between these fires," Maui County Fire Chief Bradford Ventura said, assessing the “very, very hazardous” conditions that include falling objects like charred telephone poles falling on people.

Obama was born in the Hawaiian capital Honolulu in 1961 and moved with his family to Indonesia in 1967. But Obama returned in 1971 to live with his grandparents in Hawaii, where he attended and graduated from Punahou School in 1979.

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