As pictures and videos pour in of the earthquake the ravaged Mexico, the Mexican community in southeastern Connecticut is heartbroken.
Even communities as far from the center of the quake did not escape unscathed.
At Taqueria Cinco in Groton, Luis Martinez’ head is in his work, but his heart is in Mexico.
"It’s very sad and heartbreaking to see these people lost everything at once. It’s really hard," Martinez said.
Martinez, who is originally from Tlaxcala, Mexico, said his sister and grandmother live less than two hours from Mexico City. They felt part of magnitude 7.1 earthquake that tore apart parts of the country.
"It started shaking. Up and down. People started screaming. They went under the tables to protect themselves," Martinez said.
Martinez’s relatives are safe. He learned through phone calls and Facebook that his friends are too.
Laura Ramales’ family, who is about four hours from the center of the earthquake, is also safe.
"A few buildings, churches (are damaged), but they’re safe. Thank God they’re safe," said Ramales, whose family owns Mi Casa Mexican Restaurant 2 in New London.
Her aunts, uncles and grandpa are in Guadalupe Tulcingo, Mexico, and her uncle’s house was damaged. Now they’re working to send money to help him.
“My heart is full of sadness for what my people are going through over there," Ramales said.
Tuesday’s earthquake struck on the 32nd anniversary of the 1985 earthquake in Mexico that killed thousands. Earlier that day, people were holding earthquake drills.