Across US, outpouring of grief and help for Haiti

Published: Wednesday, January 13, 2010 at 4:26 p.m.
Last Modified: Wednesday, January 13, 2010 at 4:26 p.m.

MIAMI — Across the U.S., people with relatives and friends in Haiti are desperately trying to get word from the earthquake-ravaged nation.

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Immacula Lafluier talks to her sister in Germany, as both are unable to communicate with relatives in Haiti, in the "Little Haiti" section of Miami, Wednesday, Jan. 13, 2010. On Tuesday, an earthquake shook Haiti, the largest ever recorded in the area collapsing a hospital. Other buildings also were and scientists said they expected "substantial damages and casualties".

AP Photo/Alan Diaz

In Miami, Hans Mardy has dialed hundreds of times, praying his father or sister or brothers will pick up the phone. But no one answers.

The U.S. has about 800,000 residents of Haitian descent. Some are pouring their energy into relief efforts, joining Americans with no connection to Haiti who just want to help as they collect bottled water, canned goods, medical supplies and money. Others are bowing their heads in prayer or sitting transfixed by their televisions as they await word.

People are doing what they can to mobilize aid to Haiti, the poorest country in the Western hemisphere. The U.S. is dispatching ships, helicopters, planes and a 2,000-member Marine unit.

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