YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – The 2022 Atlantic Hurricane season is heating up, and Puerto Rico is in a state of emergency after Hurricane Fiona made landfall.
Fiona blasted the Turks and Caicos Islands Tuesday as a Category 3 storm after devastating Puerto Rico where most people remain without electricity or running water.
Many local individuals right here in the Valley have ties to the island. Jeremy Morales, owner of Papa’s Bakery in Campbell, has grandparents and uncles in San Sebastian, San Juan and Aguadilla, areas that are still struggling to recover from Hurricane Maria five years ago.
“It was still affected with Hurricane Maria, so a lot of the island never got their power back. Now, with this, it’s just elongating the problem,” Morales said.
The devastating floodwaters have destroyed just about everything in their path.
“My grandmother’s crops and her fence just washed away through the flooding,” Morales said.
Leana Soto has been in Ohio for the last eight years with her husband and kids. The rest of her family is in Puerto Rico.
“My uncle lose the roof of his house. They had no light. I guess they had no water, but everyone’s good and healthy and alive,” she said.
Communication with family members is limited due to a lack of signal and WiFi, so any sign that family members are okay means a great deal.
Angelica Diaz, with OCCHA, said her husband’s family is from Salinas — one of the hardest hit places on the island.
“Puerto Rico has been through a lot. Right now, there are a lot of people suffering, and a lot of families going through difficult times. Our thoughts and prayers are with those families,” Diaz said.