As Hurricane Florence battered the Carolinas last week, the U.S. military prepped for the aftermath of the deadly storm by forward deploying troops and supplies.

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In the course of a few days, Hurricane Florence left at least 14 dead and nearly a million homes and businesses without power in North and South Carolina — and with the storm system moving north, the Department of Defense has swung into action to rescue civilians left stranded by rising floodwaters.

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MSNBC

The U.S. Coast Guard removed a service member from its Hurrican Florence emergency response force after a Coastie was spotted allegedly flashing a white supremacist hand gesture on national television.

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U.S. Air Force photo courtesy 106th Rescue Wing.

The U.S. military has “quite literally surrounded” the East Coast states that Hurricane Florence is expected to hit with personnel and equipment, which are poised to swoop in to help people in need, said Air Force Gen. Terrence O’Shaughnessy, head of U.S. Northern Command.

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The Marines will follow the lead of South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster, who on Tuesday rescinded a mandatory evacuation order previously issued for Beaufort County ahead of Hurricane Florence.

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