According to hurricane chaser Josh Morgerman, Dorian "produced the most intense winds I've personally witnessed- they tossed & mangled cars like toys".
"It's total devastation. It's decimated".
In the Bahamas, Red Cross spokesman Matthew Cochrane said more than 13,000 houses, or about 45% of the homes on Grand Bahama and Abaco, were believed to be severely damaged or destroyed. "It's not rebuilding something that was there; we have to start again". "No effort or resources will be held back".
Most of the other badly hit island - Grand Bahama, home to about 50,000 people - has still to be reached.
Archer is the former head of a parish in Long Island, Bahamas, and current rector of the Christ Episcopal church in Miami's historic Coconut Grove neighborhood, some of whose first settlers hailed from the Bahamas.
Although the center is offshore, outer bands of the huge storm were bringing blasting winds and torrential rain to the coast, and residents of coastal Georgia and the Carolinas were bracing for the impact, with hundreds of thousands of evacuations going on.
It was downgraded to Category 2 early Tuesday and the storm is expected to "move dangerously close" to the east coast of Florida and the Georgia coast overnight through Wednesday.
Hurricane Dorian closed in on the east of Cape Canaveral, Fla., around 8 p.m. Tuesday with maximum sustained wind speeds of 110 miles per hour, packing "life-threatening" storm surge, the U.S.
"Don't tough it out".
The acting administrator of the Federal Emergency Management Agency, Peter Gaynor, said 4,000 federal responders; 6,000 National Guard members; and 40,000 utility workers were on standby for the hurricane.
The Abaco Islands are home to about 17,000 people. As of late Tuesday, the storm had been blamed for seven deaths in the Bahamas. Dorian is still approaching the southeastern USA, but Williamson's tweet comes after the storm already caused catastrophic levels of damage in the Bahamas. An estimated 3 million people in the four states were warned to evacuate.
With the threat to Florida easing and the danger shifting northward, Orlando's airport reopened, along with Walt Disney World and Universal.
Part of the Abaco Islands were damaged by Hurricane Dorian, as seen on Tuesday in the Bahamas.
He packed a U-Haul truck with tables, chairs, a chest of drawers, tools - virtually all of his furnishings except for his mattress and a large TV - and planned to park it on higher ground.