The alert blared on Anthony Dohanos’ phone a few minutes after 8 a.m.
It was a false alarm. Still, for more than half an hour Anthony Dohanos — former Westporter, longtime resident of the big island of Hawaii, and son of famed illustrator Stevan Dohanos — had no reason to disbelieve the alert.
Instead, he had every reason to believe he — and everyone else in the state — would die.
“We all said our goodbyes,” he told “06880” this afternoon. He expected the missile — or missiles — to hit within 15 minutes.
It took another 20 minutes or so before the 2nd — and astonishingly more reassuring — message came through.
I spoke with Anthony a few minutes ago. It was 4 hours since the petrifying ordeal. He — and nearly everyone else in Hawaii — was still shaken up.
Another former Westporter — Bill Briggs, 1964 Staples High School graduate who earned fame as the Remains’ keyboardist — is vacationing in Hawaii.
He posted on Facebook:
I’m a little bit of a “prepper.” I says to myself, “We’re screwed!”
No shelters. No civil defense instructions. No nothin’! I had a little bit of extra medication and a really good flashlight but that’s it.
People were freaking out! We kept our cool and figured if it was true we were screwed anyway, so why panic. Incredible degree of ineptitude.
Anthony sent a GIF that’s making its way around Hawaii:
But it may be quite some time before he — and everyone else — can truly relax.