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Citizens in Vilonia React to President Obama's Visit

"Anytime you get to meet a president, it's just something you'll remember forever, for a lifetime."
VILONIA, AR - By air, and then by ground, the president was able to see the devastation of Vilonia up close.

Devastation Tim Hunter will feel for a lifetime. He lost his son Jeffrey in the tornado and says meeting the president face to face helps.

"The country is with us and things will get better with time, he knows there's nothing to be done right this moment with the loss, for the families and myself that were in there but they were behind us and we'll see each other through it," says Hunter.

"Anytime you get to meet a president, it's just something you'll remember forever, for a lifetime," says Daniel Smith.

Smith rode the storm out at a nearby shelter with his two boys, Garrison, 6, and Gabriel, 9, who picked up more than just White House mementos.

"We've never had a disaster like this before, so I was really glad to meet him and stuff because it meant that he cared for us," Gabriel Dority says.

After about 30 minutes in the Parkwood Meadows Subdivision, and over two hours in Vilonia, the president's motorcade headed out.

"He was very kind, very down to earth, just like anybody else. It wasn't about any politics or anything at all. He was here to show his support, he was very genuine. I know I probably can speak for the community that I'm just glad he was here," says Smith.

"It's just nice for him to come down and take a look. People have read it and seen it on the news, but until you actually see it you don't get the impact. I hope that's what he got today," said Hunter.

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