KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — The catastrophic bushfires that have killed at least 22 people in Lady Vols senior Lou Brown’s home country of Australia have been devastating.
Brown, transferred to UT from Washington State before the 2018-19 season. The forward from Melbourne was the first Lady Vol basketball player from Australia. Freshman Jessie Rennie, from Bendigo, Australia, joined the Lady Vols this year.
Brown said her family is safe but the country overall is hurting.
According to the World Meteorological Organization, hundreds of homes have been destroyed and thousands of acres of land have been burned. Massive damage to the environment, ecosystems, and wildlife may be unrepairable.
“The situation as a whole it’s affecting the whole of Australia is pretty surreal, Brown said. “And you kind of can’t believe that it’s happening … to the extreme that it is. The extent of the fires and the absolute brutality and cruelty just ripped through Australia right now.”
Brown shared photos taken near her home in the same place, one before the fires and one over the Christmas holiday during the fires.