Tag Archives: Hurricane Maria

Westporters’ Puerto Rico Saga Ends Well

In the long weeks following Hurricane Maria’s devastation of Puerto Rico, a Westport family did not know the fate of a loved one.

With most cell towers ruined, the Vazquez family could not contact Felix’s mother, Carol Bruno. That was the first part of a story aired the other night on NBC Nightly News with Lester Holt.

But the network looked for Carol.

And found her.

The reunion — by satellite phone — was also aired.

To see the entire segment — a bit of good news, in a continuing tragedy — click here.

(Hat tip: Jeff Mitchell)

 

Puerto Rico Relief Effort: “Breathtaking”

Marcy Sansolo organized 2 previous relief efforts via her What Up Westport Facebook page. Both were very successful.

But Sunday’s outpouring of love and care — for Puerto Rico’s victims of Hurricane Maria — was, she says, “nothing short of breathtaking.”

The drive at the Westport Library parking lot was arranged in just 3 days. Drop-off times for goods and supplies lasted only 2 hours. But the response of Westporters was heartwarming.

A woman who works at Pottery Barn dropped off items she had purchased. An hour later she returned, with a large box of donations from the store.

Two young children made cards. Older kids helped parents empty their cars.

A note to the children of Puerto Rico.

“I don’t think there’s any bug spray or diapers left at CVS,” Sansolo says. “I’m sure we cleaned them out.”

“The sense of community was inspiring,” Sansolo says. “Members of What Up Westport came from as far as New York. Everyone asked, ‘How can I help?'”

When it was clear that more drivers would be needed to deliver donations to shipping centers, Sansolo ordered a U-Haul. Many people offered to split the cost. That’s in addition to 6 SUVs and minivans, all filled to the brim.

A small portion of the many donations.

The news from Las Vegas yesterday stunned Sansolo. She loves live music, and cannot conceive of what happened at that concert.

But, she says, “then I think about all of the beauty and love I saw on Sunday. My hope in mankind is renewed.”

Sansolo plans more community events on What Up Westport. She welcomes everyone who wants to join.

What Up Westport? Help Puerto Rico

As Puerto Rico pleads for help, Westport acts.

Tomorrow, (Sunday, October 1) What Up Westport — the popular Facebook group — has organized a drive to collect much-needed items for the hurricane-battered island.

Hurricane Maria’s floodwaters have receded. But the situation in Puerto Rico remains dire. This is the mayor of San Juan, helping people while wading through sewage-filled water with a bullhorn.

Supplies can be dropped off from 3-5 p.m. at the Westport Library upper lot (near the Levitt Pavilion). They’ll be shipped quickly, through a New York relief organization.

Emergency supplies

  • Bottled Water
  • Baby wipes
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Diapers
  • Canned foods
  • Dry foods
  • Baby formula
  • Garbage bags
  • Towels
  • Canned milk
  • Canned and dry pet food
  • Baby and adult pain relief medicine,
  • Stomach and diarrhea relief medicine
  • Mosquito repellent
  • Blankets
  • Pillows
  • First aid kits
  • Laundry detergents
  • Dish soap
  • Cots

Construction supplies

  • Extension cords
  • Ground fault protectors
  • Pop-up canopies
  • Shovels
  • Wheelbarrows
  • Crowbars
  • Hammers
  • Utility knives
  • Work gloves
  • Wood panels
  • Electric generators
  • Electric cables
  • Tarps
  • Ropes
  • Chainsaws
  • Safety glasses.

NOTE: Please bring only these items. Be sure to check expiration dates.

Come on, Westport. Let’s help our fellow Americans. See you at the library!