Some Arizonans still haven’t heard from family in Puerto Rico

Posted: Updated:
(Source: 3TV/CBS 5) (Source: 3TV/CBS 5)

Hurricane Maria made history books last Wednesday when it tore through Puerto Rico. Power went out across the island making communication difficult.

Some Arizonans say it wasn’t until nine days after the storm that they heard from their loved ones. A few still haven’t made contact, like Wesley Andujar who owns Puerto Rico Latin Bar and Grill on 27th Avenue and Thomas Road.

[RELATED: Puerto Rico devastated, Phoenix restaurant steps up to help]

“Every day, I call, see if I can get a response, nothing,” said Andujar. “I cry. I literally sit there and cry. Especially in the morning. I open up the phone and I start seeing the videos. It rips me apart.”

Meanwhile, he’s trying to make an impact. He created a donation drive that’s generated interest from across the state. Cox Communications donated a warehouse to store the truckloads of emergency supplies that have been dropped off at the restaurant.

But Puerto Ricans are showing up to his restaurant for something more. When they sit down for a meal the questions begin. Andujar makes the rounds to his tables, most of them with ties to the island. He asks each one of them if they’ve contacted their families. Some are in the same boat. Other customers say they have finally heard some positive news this week.

“Who doesn’t hear from their family like, for a week on end after a disaster not knowing if they’re alive?” said Omar Figueroa who has spent the week worrying about his father, grandfather, aunts and uncles. “I just got a text today saying they’re alive.”

Wesley Andujar is working with some bigger organizations to get all of the donations to Fort Lauderdale and eventually to Puerto Rico.

Wesley is asking for batteries, flashlights, baby formula, diapers, women’s hygiene products, canned food, clothing, toiletries, bottled water, electricity generators 10w-30 4 cycles, or 10w-30.

Donations can be dropped off to:

-474 E Thomas Rd., Phoenix

-2714 W Thomas Rd., Phoenix

-7246 S Central Avenue, Phoenix

-1020 N. 1st Ave, Phoenix

-1616 W Main St., Mesa

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