Connecticut residents with family in Puerto Rico are desperate to get in touch with them after Hurricane Maria devastated the island.
Virtually the entire island is without power, and it has made communication difficult.
Maria Valle, president of the Puerto Rican Parade of Fairfield County, has been trying to get in touch with her husband, who she has not heard from since the storm.
He left their Bridgeport home on Friday to visit his two sisters in Puerto Rico. Valle lost touch with him late Tuesday.
“This morning I text him. I’ve called his number, his sister’s number and no answer,” she said.
The couple has been married for nearly 50 years.
“I am really concerned that they have not reached out or said I’m okay. I just pray that they’re okay. There’s nothing I can do,” she said.
On Wednesday, Valle hosted a community meeting at her home that was originally planned as a gathering to discuss issues in their neighborhoods, but the topic turned to the despair on the island 1,600 miles away.
Hector Gonzalez has a brother and several other family members in Puerto Rico. He has not been able to reach any of them since Maria made landfall on Tuesday.
“We’re just praying. Everyone’s praying. At work today I was a total mess, I couldn’t even concentrate. We’re praying to God that no one’s hurt," Gonzalez said.
Bridgeport resident Enid Vazquez has a mother, father, grandfather, cousins and other relatives in Puerto Rico. She was born on the island but moved to Connecticut 12 years ago.
“It feels frustrating, like I have my hands tied,” Vazquez said of not being able to help her family.