ENTERPRISE, Ala. (WDHN) — With the death toll now around 100, there are still more than 1,000 Maui residents unaccounted for from last week’s raging wildfires.
One Hawaii native who settled in Enterprise more than a decade ago with her husband tries to keep up with family and friends at ground zero in the devastation.
“I feel really bad for the people who have lost everything, there’s a lot of people who died in their cars, people jumped in the water and I’m sure a lot of them didn’t know how to swim and they are still finding bodies,” said Patterson.
Marlene Patterson often visits her friend, Mary Hugley, the owner and operator of Good Samaritan Helping Hands in downtown Enterprise.
In 2013, Marlene and now her late husband settled in Enterprise after both retired from the military.
Marlene is from the big island of Hawaii but has numerous cousins and family in Maui. Since the fatal wildfire raced through Maui last week, she has spent long hours trying to reconnect with them. Social media has helped tremendously.
“When it first happened we tried finding my cousin who was not heard from for awhile and thankfully word got out that he’s fine and his family is fine,” says Patterson.
Mary has spent much of her life looking to donate her time, supplies and anything else to help those who lost everything. With Marlene’s optimism, a chance to help those who barely escaped Maui with their lives has presented itself.
“When tragedies come, accidents, whatever the case might be, it brings us together. And it is written when we come together it is spelled L.O.V.E. Love,” said Hugely.