Daily reports have been made on the devastation by Hurricane Maria on Puerto Rico. Lea Ann Maceyko wants the public to know that same storm left the island of St Croix with similar damage.
Maceyko, a Cardington native, resident and CPA, has owned a home and CPA business in St Croix for ten years. The island, a part of the U.S. Virgin Islands, sustained loss of electric, flooded streets, downed trees, heavily damaged homes and businesses. It encompasses 154 miles and has a population of about 50,000 people.
“It’s prime purpose is a tourist attraction but this damage will have long-term consequences,” said Maceyko who has hosted as many as 100 Cardington friends and relatives at her home in the community of Frederiksted.
Because FEMA has been inundated helping with hurricane damage in Houston, Florida and Puerto Rico, Maceyko said they will not be able to get assistance to St.Croix for some time so she is stepping up and seeking assistance from her hometown.
She likens the situation to the 1981 tornado that ravaged Cardington. “People came from all over the country to help this small town rebuild homes and businesses.”
In this case, it is physically difficult to travel to St Croix at this time because of the distance and the fact there is a body of water to cross and the airport is closed. She and two friends caught the last evacuation plane out of St Croix before Maria struck.
Maceyko said they dodged a bullet when the previous hurricane, Irma, just gave a glancing blow to the islands but it was different just a few days later when Maria struck.
Seventy per cent of the island has sustained damage from winds clocked at 120 mph.
“The island of St Croix needs help now,” she said. Because it is physically impossible to travel there at this time, she is asking for cash donations so food and supplies can be purchased. They can be shipped free.
Generators are a priority. “Right now 200 are needed and a donation of $5 by 200 people would purchase one generator,” she said.
One generator costs $1,000.
People wishing to donate or for more information, can call her at 419-864-6981 or write to P O Box 152, Cardington, OH 43315.
Donation jugs have been placed at Suz E-Q’s, Cardington Market and Maceyko Tax. She thanked all of her friends in Morrow County and the surrounding area for their caring assistance.