Dear Family and Friends:
Thank you for your thoughts and prayers in the last couple of days.
The picture below represents the damage Hurricane Maria imparted on the US Virgin Islands, and Puerto Rico, a US Territory. It compares to nuclear bomb detonation.
100% of the infrastructure was down as of the drafting of this message. No electricity, water, phone services, or internet. No bridges or roads, as they were taken down by the torrents of the rivers, or blocked by the trees, poles, and debris from destroyed homes.
No communications at all with loved ones, government agencies, or emergency services, as they will have to dig themselves out of the rubble first, then open lines of communication and transportation for the outside world to bring aide. That may take weeks, if not months.
Me and friends/colleagues/veterans from my small hometown on the NW side of the Island founded 2 non-profit civic organizations over a decade ago to aide in nation building programs (that could not be provided by the government down there), such as dog rescue, and lifeguard training to name a few. Our group members living here on the Mainland (various States), have started an effort to collect donations of any kind for relief operations to our small hometown of Quebradillas (Little Creeks). One of our members has secured a shipping container that we intend to fill with donations and ship straight where needed the most, to our small town. You can find us on-line as: Pirata Surf Club or House of the Doggz; FB: pirate surf club hurricane relief
Specific needs are medicine, food, water, fuel, tarps, chain saws, water filters, generators, flashlights, batteries. Non-perishable canned goods, over-the-counter medicine, medical supplies, baby formula, diapers, and cash. Clothing is not needed. Collections locally are being taken at the NSB Skate Park, 254 Industrial Park Avenue, New Smyrna Beach. Tary Valle, Manager. 386-427-8417. 100% of your donations will go for the benefit of citizens in the Quebradillas area.
This is the worst catastrophe to ever hit our little Caribbean paradise, which is no more. Recovery will take months, if not years. May God bless you for caring. Please share this message with others, if you would, as many of you have been asking me what the situation is down there, and what you can do to help.
Hector R. Valle Sr., Smyrna Surfari Club Member