Local Members of the Puerto Rican Community Concerned after Hurricane Maria


Millions in Puerto Rico continue to suffer from the devastation of Hurricane Maria and now the effects are being felt here in the Capital Region.

Many are still without power in Puerto Rico. Meanwhile, their loved ones here in Albany are desperately hoping they are okay.

By now most have seen the devastating images out of Puerto Rico. Buildings destroyed, streets flooded.

Thousands of miles away, Luis Ceintron worries for those closest to him.

“I don’t have information about my family,” Ceintron said.

He’s a student at UAlbany, but he was born and raised on the island. His parents and girlfriend still live there.

As the images continue to pour in, the anxiety continues to rise for those with local ties.

“Very scary, it’s so devastated what’s going on there right now,” Yvette Vega said.

Rotterdam resident Yvette Vega says she has no idea if her friends are okay.

“I’m waiting for word on them. I’ve been checking Facebook every day to see if someone will give an update and I haven’t heard anything yet,” Vega said.

Meanwhile, Kenneth Gonzalez lived in Puerto Rico for five years. His daughter is still there.

“I’m very frustrated because I can’t get in contact with her. I don’t know where she’s at,” Gonzalez.

Gonzalez just wants to hear from her, and make sure she’s safe.

“I love you Niaomi. Daddy’s missing you. I just want to know how you are doing and can you please call me,” Gonzalez said.

Gladys Figueroa is helping with relief efforts by collecting clothes, food, and water to be sent to the island.

“Help is on the way,” Figueroa said.

Meanwhile, Cientron says he’s already planning to return to his home next week.

“My country is very strong, the Puerto Ricans are very strong people,” Cientron said. “My priority now is to find my girlfriend, find my Dad and my Mom, and my grandparents.”

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