Local woman loses family in Samoa

October 1, 2009 10:06:27 AM PDT
There is so much that is needed in Samoa and Samoans living here in the Bay Area are trying to help friends and family in their homeland. One local woman has suffered horrible losses, but in her grief comes action.

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Betty Leasau sits quietly inside her San Jose home as she watches online video of what's left of her hometown in American Samoa.

"This is the home of one of my aunts who passed away," said Leasau.

Three aunts and one uncle died in Tuesday's tsunami. They were pulled from their homes in Leone and washed out to sea. Four of Betty's cousins are still in critical condition.

"I want to be there for my dad and for all those who have lost their loved ones, I feel hopeless we are not able to do anything for them," says Leasau.

It's a feeling many Samoans share. That's why four South Bay community churches held a vigil and asked for support for family members back home and it came immediately.

Crossroad Calvary Chapel is the main drop off center for all of San Jose. The goal is to fill two large containers with supplies and ship them out by next Thursday.

"I brought rice, and canned fruit, ravioli, you know, non perishable items," says Jennie Livingston from San Jose.

Niko Livingston drove from Salinas to be with his community. It's the only comforting thing he could think to do right now.

"I had a strong sense of helplessness watching my home, especially places I've been familiar with, I've walked on...destroyed," says Niko Livingston.

He plans to return to Samoa next month to help rebuild his homeland.

If you would like to make a donation, the Crossroad Calvary Chapel will be staying open late to accept donations daily from 7 a.m. to 11 p.m.

Crossroads Calvary Chapel Samoan
Assembly of God
990 S. Capitol Avenue
San Jose, CA
Crossroad Calvary Chapel
(408) 272-3636

Click here for more donation opportunities to Samoa

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