How many people were killed in the Mt. Saint Helen's volcano?

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    In May of 2000, a memorial plaque was placed in a grove of trees at the Hoffstadt Bluffs Visitor's Center in memory of the victims of the eruption. Fifty-seven names are etched into the plaque. Fifty-seven lives needlessly lost. They were loggers, campers, reporters and scientists. In all, there were 36 victims brought out of the devastated area. But after all of the searching, rescues and recoveries, there were still many people who were never found. By the third week following the blast, 25 people were confirmed dead but 47 were still on the missing list. Luckily, 15 of the missing were later found alive.
    Only four of the victims were known to be inside the restricted areas set up by federal and local governments. David Johnston was on duty for the USGS stationed at Coldwater II only 5 miles from the summit. There was the stubborn Harry Truman who refused to leave his lodge at Spirit Lake and was eventually given special permission to stay. And amateur vulcanologists Bob Kaseweter and Beverly Wetherald who had permission to take readings near Spirit Lake at their own risk. The other victims, some as far as 13 miles from the mountain, were in areas considered safe. The thick clouds of ash and raging mudflows caught many people off guard.

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