Earthquake update

The last post reads as being very flippant.  I wrote it before I had any knowledge of just how devastating the damage here is. I think I was just amazed at having sat here while I felt the entire house shifting around me and being thankful we had spent all that money on the rebar after all. It’s scary being on the second floor of a concrete building in an earthquake. I’m sure many of you are following the news right now, especially if you have connections to Haiti in any way.

We are all okay. It feels good to finally be able to say that. I last talked to Chris about 20 minutes before the quake hit. He called to tell me that the truck we had gotten today as a loaner from the Toyota dealership was giving him problems so he was waiting for the guys from the dealership to come look at it. He was thinking about staying in town for the night if they couldn’t get the truck working properly again and would let me know what happened.

Immediately after the quake hit our phones went down and are still down. Seeing photos of the damage in Port I’m not surprised. Chris and I couldn’t get in contact with each other. I had no idea where he was, he had no idea if we were okay here. The last several hours have been full of emails, face book updates etc because thankfully our internet was still working. After a long time (about 4.5 hours) of not knowing where my husband was or if he was okay a car pulled into the lane in front of our driveway and dropped him off. I stood on the balcony watching and crying.

He was in the middle of an open road area when the quake hit Port. While the guys were working on the truck he started trying to help people get out of the buildings that had come down around him. He was able to help one girl and not able to help others. Pray for him. Those memories will be with him for a very long time. When he realized he couldn’t do any more he walked and found a bus that took him to Archaie. On the bus he met a man named Amos who had gone out to get a sandwich and minutes later found his house was flattened as was the school where he worked. He took his sandwich and got on a bus headed for Cap Haitien because everything that had made up his life in Port was gone. Amos is sleeping in our dorms and when I took him sheets and towels and asked how he was doing he simply said, with a smile, “M’ pa pi mal, gras a Dieu. ”  I’m not bad, by the grace of God.

I don’t know what else to say after that.

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About Leslie

I'm Leslie. Wife. Mother. Missionary. In the day to day my husband and I are responsible for running Clean Water for Haiti, a humanitarian mission that builds and distributes water filters to Haitian families. Living in Haiti full time provides lots of stories, and as I tell my husband, our grandkids probably won't believe most of them. Maybe writing them down will give me some credibility.

17 thoughts on “Earthquake update

  1. I’m with QR77 News radio in Calgary Alberta. Our program director is John Vos, John Carruther’s brother-in-law. As you can imagine, many Calgarians are concerned and wanting to know more about the events that happened and what they can do to help. I understand the phones are down, but if you are at all able to call us when they are restored, we would be very appreciative of your comments. The words of your husband would be particularly interesting, if he’s up for it. Please call collect if you wish, 001-403-262-6397 anytime. Thank you very much.

  2. Leslie and Chris … I feel so sad for all the people in Haiti tonight. Its not fair that I can turn on my tap to wash my face and brush my teeth. I wish I had lots of money to give the people of Haiti, they are not bad. YES REBAR!!! I am angry when the CBC National news reports that no postive action has been confirmed on the departure of our Canadian DART team. As a Canadian they should have left hours ago with supplies. I will send light and love to your adopted country. I am glad you’re safe.

  3. Thank you for the update Leslie. Please don’t worry about the tone of what you write. I am amazed and very appreciative that you were able to write at all. It is so good to hear you are all doing alright and that Chris is home safely.

    Could you please post as you hear of other friends who might check in with you. I happened across a twitter from Troy Livesay and they are all okay.

    We all stand ready to help as you wish.
    May God continue to hold you close.

  4. “Blessed is he who has great regard for the weak;
    The LORD delivers him in times of trouble.

    The LORD will protect him and preserve his life;
    he will bless him in the land and not surrender him to his foes.

    Thank you ;) Leslie and Chris

  5. Ronel & I were looking online to try and find out more info and the photos we saw were heart breaking! I am SO thankful that you guys are okay.

    Our prayers are with you and with Haiti.

    please keep us updated as you can…..

  6. Hello there… not sure if you remember me but I’m a friend of Ben’s. I think we met at his wedding. You guys were the first people in my thoughts when I heard the devastating news. I am so happy you are okay.

    I’m a news writer for the local Fox station here in Los Angeles. We’re trying to get first hand accounts out of Haiti… I’m not sure if you have phone service yet but if you are interested in doing a phone interview with us on air, we would love to talk with you. You can reach me by email all morning at You can also reach me by my cell phone at (818)640-7744. I know this is the lowest priority… I can’t imagine all that you will be dealing with. But it might be a good way to help get some support into the area. My thoughts and prayers are with you.

  7. Hello Leslie and Chris

    So glad to hear you are OK. Our thoughts are with you ,your friends,colleagues indeed all of the Haitian people who are suffering so much from this latest tragedy.

  8. Dear Les and Chris,

    Well, as I wrote in my other email to you, I’m very thankful that you, Olivia and Chris were safe. Are your workers ok too? I hope that you will continue to be very careful in the coming days and weeks as buildings’ structures in PaP may have been compromised with the quake and even those that are still standing or partially standing could still come down. I’m sure you know that though. Thankfully it sounds like your house is solid. There is not much info on the news here as the phone lines are down.
    Last I heard on the CBC this morning, the US has committed some relief troops to Haiti but I can’t remember when they were heading out and Canada is sending an assessment team to determine if we should send our disaster relief team. I was pretty angry when I read about that. “If”???!!! They are justifying this by saying we need the Haitian government’s to request it. I think DART should have been deployed as soon as news arrived about the quake. That’s just me though…
    Sending you love

  9. Hi Les & Chris,
    So relieved and thankful to God that Chris got home and that you are all safe; thanks for the updates and know that you’re constantly in our prayers.
    Hugs and much love, Mom & Dad L.

  10. Thank you, thank you, thank you for getting word to us. Keep journaling us! Ask for us to pray for specifics for you – we’ll pass the post!

  11. Dear Leslie,
    I’m sorry to bother you with requests when you are in the midst of tradgedy over there but you have the only blog site I can find on ile a Vache. My niece Kim is on the yacht KARAKA which arrived there on the 9th and we have not heard from them since. Can any of your staff check if Karaka is in the harbour and send a message to I’m touched by your stories as my husband and I met in Africa and lived in the Pacific for 15 years, adopting both our children there.
    God bless
    Maggie Kenyon (in Australia)

    • Hi Maggie,
      I’m sorry, but we’re 4 hours away from Les Cayes, the nearest take off point to Ile A Vache. I’m sure if your neice was on a yacth when the quake hit they will be fine. Internet service is patch for most right now. We’re very lucky to have what we have.

  12. Hi I found your site if there is any thing I could do please email me. My finanses arew low but perhaps could try and do fund raising. I made a video on utube called
    Haity emergency salutions check it out and I’m under cosmiccrystal7 I think that if some one could use my ideas in Haidi it would help the peopke gratley its about tent villages
    by color coed rwed for thye sick yellow for the lost children easy ways to locate each other .. If you could conect me with email addresses of english speaking haishins incharge to get my ideas across it would truly help them. I also have higeane ideas..please stay protected and where masks to not breath in all the disease and eat garlic and if you put on aromatherapy this will keep you from getting sick.

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