Residents Worried About Their Families in Puerto Rico (PHOTOS)

Flooding in Puerto Rico PHOTO| Karen Luciano

Ken Hartman is waiting to hear an update from his family in Carolina, Puerto Rico. The last time he talked to one of his cousins was Friday; just two days after Hurricane Maria wreaked havoc on the island.

“There’s no electricity in Carolina so it’s very difficult,” he said.

Karen Luchiano, however, has not spoken to her family in a week. Her mother and father are in Cabo Rojo which is situated on the southwest coast of the island.

She’s currently finishing up her master’s degree at the Pontifical Catholic University of Puerto Rico, Ponce Campus. Instead of focusing on her internship here in Maryland, she said her mind is back home.

“It’s really hard,” she said. “It’s like you’re talking to your family everyday and now you can’t […] it’s just so hard.”

Luchiano has found some comfort and support from two other interns, George Santiago and Carlos Carrero.

“My brother communicated with me through WhatsApp that my family is okay,” Santiago said.

Santiago is from San Juan, the capital of Puerto Rico located on the northeast region of the island.  Santiago’s  mother, father, sister and brother are in San Juan.

“My biggest concern is food,” he said. “We import a lot of food and I don’t know if there is enough.”

Carrero hasn’t heard from his family in Aguada at all. Instead, his uncle in Georgia gave him an update on their family on Saturday.  Aguada, like Cabo Rojo, is the country-side. According to Carrero, people either drive or walk.  He’s worried that there is not attention or support for the country-side of the island.

“Everything is going to the north side or the metro-center but not much is going to the west side or other areas,” he said.

Since power is down in certain areas of the island, the students are helping to spread the word on social media about the safety of other people’s loved ones, no matter who and where you are.

A Facebook Page titled, “Huracan Maria Puerto Rico,” was created to help find missing people.

A drop-off donation event will be held in Rockville on Saturday to help those affected in Puerto Rico and the caribbean.

The event will take place at the Dynamite Gymnastics Center, 4956 Boiling Brook Parkway, from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m on Sept. 30 and Oct. 1


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Mitti Hicks

About Mitti Hicks

Mitti Hicks is a multimedia journalist and community engagement specialist with Montgomery Community Media. She is passionate about telling stories that impact our community and may be reached at and on Twitter @mittimegan.


One Response to “Residents Worried About Their Families in Puerto Rico (PHOTOS)”

  1. On September 26, 2017 at 3:49 pm responded with... #

    Below please find information compiled by the Puerto Rico Federal Affairs Administration (PRFAA), the Puerto Rico Governor’s office in DC, regarding Hurricane Maria.

    PRFAA emails: – If you have not been able to contact your loved ones in PR due to Hurricane Maria, please contact the PRFAA Disaster Relief Team by sending an email with your contact information and request. Due to the high volume of requests, we kindly ask you not to send follow-up e-mails, unless your or your loved ones’ situation has changed. – If you are interested in volunteering for PRFAA’s Hurricane Maria disaster relief efforts in Washington, DC please contact us at this email, or by completing form at

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