Local students affected by Hurricane Maria's damage to Puerto Rico

2 weeks 6 days 21 hours ago Tuesday, September 26 2017 Sep 26, 2017 Tuesday, September 26, 2017 2:17:00 PM CDT September 26, 2017 in News
By: Sydney Olsen, KOMU 8 Reporter
loading

COLUMBIA - Hurricane Maria ripped through Puerto Rico leaving destruction in its path. The island was left in disarray, and many people's homes were destroyed. The hurricane affected many families on the island, but it also had an impact on some people in the Columbia area. 

Several graduate students at MU have family and friends in Puerto Rico. Jasmine Hall is a graduate student who has friends, cousins, aunts, and uncles who live on the northern part of the island. 

Hall said she was finally able to contact some of her family on Monday. 

"With Irma which was just two weeks before we were very stressed out and worried. So with Maria, it's the same feeling of not knowing if you're going to be able to get in contact with your family, not knowing if they're going to be okay, not knowing anything. It's like a waiting game," Hall said. 

Gustavo Santiago is also a graduate student with family in Puerto Rico.

"My entire family is there. Mainly they are in the south of the island," Santiago said. "I have my father, my mother, sisters, cousins, uncles, every family member you can think of there."

Santiago said he received a call from his girlfriend on Monday saying his family was alright. He said it is difficult to get in contact with anyone on the island, especially the southern part of the island, because there is barely any cell phone signal. 

Santiago was concerned about one family member's home.

"My biggest thought was my uncle has a house made of wood, so it was pretty old. And I was thinking he is going to end up without a home," Santiago said. "He doesn't have a house anymore."

He said more than anything he was worried about his family's lives. 

"I was worried about also their lives because material things can be replaced, but their lives are the most important," Santiago said. 

Hall said her grandmother's health issues were affected by Hurricane Maria.

"My grandmother, she had a stroke and she was in a center and she can't get treatment," Hall said.

Both Hall and Santiago said it has been very difficult to send supplies to their family and friends, even though people are in need. Hall said people on the island have been waiting for hours for supplies because they are all at the ports.

"All the supplies are at the ports, but it's about a 10 kilometer drive to get to the ports. And the lines are no longer people amounts, they're kilometer amounts. Miles long of people waiting," Hall said.

She said her cousin in Puerto Rico waited in line on Monday for ice from 4 a.m. to about 2 p.m.

Both Hall and Santiago said the best way to send supplies would be with someone visiting the island because UPS and FedEx are having trouble servicing the island. 

Hall had some advice for those who want to help by sending supplies.

"Send those things that you don't think about. Not just water, but diapers and those types of things."

She also said people who are planning on donating money should do their research about the group they are donating to.

"I suggest research who you're giving to and look at what they've done in the past with natural disasters across the globe. And if those people have not done anything or if you've never heard of them, be leery," Hall said. "If you know anybody that's actually going, send them with things. That's great too."

More News

Grid
List
TONGANOXIE, Kan. (AP) — Authorities have arrested a man and found three sisters whose disappearance in August from their Kansas... More >>
1 hour ago Tuesday, October 17 2017 Oct 17, 2017 Tuesday, October 17, 2017 10:09:53 AM CDT October 17, 2017 in News
ST. LOUIS (AP) — A man has been charged with shooting a St. Louis police detective in the shoulder last... More >>
1 hour ago Tuesday, October 17 2017 Oct 17, 2017 Tuesday, October 17, 2017 10:02:35 AM CDT October 17, 2017 in News
SPRINGFIELD (AP) — Authorities say deputies have shot and wounded a man after he pointed a gun at them in... More >>
1 hour ago Tuesday, October 17 2017 Oct 17, 2017 Tuesday, October 17, 2017 9:55:26 AM CDT October 17, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA (AP) — The University of Missouri is hiring the top Missouri state senator's chief of staff to be the... More >>
1 hour ago Tuesday, October 17 2017 Oct 17, 2017 Tuesday, October 17, 2017 9:50:49 AM CDT October 17, 2017 in News
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — The Missouri House Ethics Committee is reviewing a complaint against a lawmaker who called for... More >>
2 hours ago Tuesday, October 17 2017 Oct 17, 2017 Tuesday, October 17, 2017 9:44:07 AM CDT October 17, 2017 in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — Missouri Gov. Eric Greitens is headed to the United Kingdom and Switzerland on his second trade... More >>
2 hours ago Tuesday, October 17 2017 Oct 17, 2017 Tuesday, October 17, 2017 9:36:53 AM CDT October 17, 2017 in News
CARUTHERSVILLE (AP) — Authorities are searching for two inmates who escaped Sunday from the Pemiscot County jail. The St.... More >>
2 hours ago Tuesday, October 17 2017 Oct 17, 2017 Tuesday, October 17, 2017 9:31:27 AM CDT October 17, 2017 in News
O'FALLON (AP) — Authorities say a school bus and car have collided in suburban St. Louis, sending five students and... More >>
2 hours ago Tuesday, October 17 2017 Oct 17, 2017 Tuesday, October 17, 2017 9:23:00 AM CDT October 17, 2017 in News
KANSAS CITY (AP) — Police records show there has been an unprecedented spike in gun thefts in Kansas City, Missouri.... More >>
2 hours ago Tuesday, October 17 2017 Oct 17, 2017 Tuesday, October 17, 2017 9:17:12 AM CDT October 17, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - The Boone County Sherrif's Department will conduct DWI saturation patrols from October 16 to October 23. Deputies... More >>
4 hours ago Tuesday, October 17 2017 Oct 17, 2017 Tuesday, October 17, 2017 7:00:00 AM CDT October 17, 2017 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - Jefferson City inspectors have issued more than 3,000 property violations so far in 2017, and a new... More >>
8 hours ago Tuesday, October 17 2017 Oct 17, 2017 Tuesday, October 17, 2017 3:31:00 AM CDT October 17, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA- A semi truck crashed over a guard rail on U-63 by E. Friendship Church Rd. late Monday night. ... More >>
11 hours ago Monday, October 16 2017 Oct 16, 2017 Monday, October 16, 2017 11:57:00 PM CDT October 16, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - A crash on Highway 63 South left two drivers in the hospital Monday night. The crash happened... More >>
11 hours ago Monday, October 16 2017 Oct 16, 2017 Monday, October 16, 2017 11:50:00 PM CDT October 16, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA – City council members approved the construction of two new roundabouts near Mill Creek Elementary School following a public... More >>
15 hours ago Monday, October 16 2017 Oct 16, 2017 Monday, October 16, 2017 8:20:00 PM CDT October 16, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - An unnamed organization reported to the Better Business Bureau that it lost more than $3,000 from a phishing... More >>
15 hours ago Monday, October 16 2017 Oct 16, 2017 Monday, October 16, 2017 8:16:00 PM CDT October 16, 2017 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - The Missouri Department of Transportation and Missouri Coalition for Roadway Safety are challenging drivers this week to... More >>
15 hours ago Monday, October 16 2017 Oct 16, 2017 Monday, October 16, 2017 8:00:00 PM CDT October 16, 2017 in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — Missouri's U.S. senators are pitching the Kansas City and St. Louis metropolitan areas as potential sites... More >>
16 hours ago Monday, October 16 2017 Oct 16, 2017 Monday, October 16, 2017 7:32:00 PM CDT October 16, 2017 in News
COLUMBIA - Race Matters, Friends is currently seeking out volunteers to sit in on, take notes on and observe court... More >>
16 hours ago Monday, October 16 2017 Oct 16, 2017 Monday, October 16, 2017 7:27:00 PM CDT October 16, 2017 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 60°
12pm 66°
1pm 68°
2pm 70°
3pm 70°

Select a station to view its upcoming schedule:

Coming Up Next

11:00a
Rachael Ray
12:00p
KOMU 8 News @ Noon
12:30p
Inside Edition
11:00a
Jerry Springer
12:00p
Jerry Springer
1:00p
Maury

Tonight's Schedule

7:00p
The Voice
8:00p
This Is Us
9:01p
Law & Order True Crime: The Menendez Murders
7:00p
The Flash
8:00p
DC's Legends of Tomorrow
9:00p
KOMU 8 News @ Nine on The CW
9:30p
Seinfeld