GRANTS PASS, Ore. — Since Typhoon Haiyan hit the Philippines last week, the only thing on the mind of Dorina Bates- Dereus is her family.
“I’ve been checking my Facebook, I’ve been calling I stay up until 1a.m. to try to figure out. I’ve called the Philippines, all the numbers I have in my phone and I can’t get ahold of one,” said Bates-Dereus.
Her parents and five sisters and a brother live in the Philippines and were right in the path of the typhoon. She last spoke to them the day before the giant storm hit and vividly remembers what her brother in law and mother were saying.
“He said ‘The wind is so hard’ and I lost him. Then I called my mother and she said ‘We can’t get out of the house because of how hard the wind is,’” said Bates-Dereus.
She has a niece who lives near a town where some of her family lives. Her niece said she heard the family was safe, but Bates-Dereus said she will not feel relieved until she knows for sure they escaped the worst of the storm. Every time she turns on the television or goes on the internet, the images of destruction reminds her of the odds.
“My two sisters live with my mom and dad, but I heard that most of the houses where my mom lives are gone” said Bates-Dereus.
And until she gets a phone call, email or, anything, Bates-Dereus is left wondering.
“I don’t know if they don’t have food, I don’t know if they have roofs right now over their head,” said Bates-Dereus.