I do not normally like doing this, but people have suggested that I give it a try. Some of you may know that my father lives in Coral Bay on St. John, and he was there when Hurricane Irma made its way though the U.S. Virgin Islands on Wednesday, September 6th.
During the storm, my dad was in a downstairs bedroom in his house, waiting it out with two of his friends. When the eyewall of the storm hit Coral Bay with 225 mile per hour winds, the force ripped the 3/4 inch plywood covering the bedroom sliding door out of the wall. Not long after that, the slider shattered due to the pressure differential and my father just made it into the bathroom, holding the door shut for the next five hours. He, along with those that he was staying with, were lucky to survive.
The pictures in the aftermath of Irma were catastrophic. During the event, a tornado formed in the eyewall of hurricane that ripped the roof off of the house, flattened the wooden cottage next to it, and threw his pickup truck 20 feet down a retaining wall by the side of the house. The place is now more or less unlivable and he's been staying across the street at a generous neighbor's place.
My father has been a resident on island for 20 years, and like many down there, he is extremely resourceful. However, not having an airport on island and living in a remote area will make rebuilding even more exepensive. As I said before, I don't like asking for money, but I know that he would appreciate anything.
However, I feel that it is extremely important to keep in mind that Irma and Maria have created widespread destruction across the U.S. Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico. Those impacted on all of the islands are Americans. The situation in Puerto Rico is especially dire, given a lack of response from our government. Therefore, if you feel more compelled to give to Puerto Rico, or if you want to give to both, here is a way to do so: http://unidosporpuertorico.com/en/. On St. John there is a foundation called, "Love for Love City" which is run by Kenny Chesney (he has been doing great things on island, including contributing construction supplies and generators). Here is the link for his relief fund where you can buy merchandise that goes to the disaster fund: https://kennychesney.com/news.
- Daniel Horning
- Aliya Appelbaum
- Debbie & Daniel Alexandre
- Thomas Lavin
- Cathie Gray
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