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57 evacuees reported dead; at least 2 committed suicide

HOUSTON -- At least two of the Katrina evacuees scattered around the country have committed suicide, and 55 others have died as well, most of them sick and elderly people whose conditions may have been worsened by stress, authorities said yesterday.

In Texas, which has greeted at least 250,000 Katrina victims, more than any other state, at least 53 have died in the more than two weeks since those fleeing the flood left the New Orleans area.

Two deaths were reported in Tennessee.

Alma Morrow, 78, of New Orleans, died in Dallas on Monday of kidney failure and a collapsed lung, according to her brother. Nineteen other family members had gone to San Antonio.

''All she was doing was asking for me," said one of her sisters, Ophelia Evans, 76. ''I think probably she would have made it if she didn't have to go through this."

Two suicides were reported near Houston: A man, 44, from Metairie, La., shot himself in a Humble hotel Sept. 4, and on Saturday, a man, 25, from Marrero, La., hanged himself in a Pasadena apartment, officials said.

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