Trini woman’s frantic search for Carriacou family: ‘I just want to be with them’

The content originally appeared on: Trinidad and Tobago Newsday

Jeffery and five-year old Trinidadian born Emmalynn Saxon who were in Carriacou when Hurricane Beryl ravaged the island. They are currently trying to get to Trinidad where Emma Saxon (wife and mother) is eager to see them. –

Hours after Hurricane Beryl made landfall completely flattening the island of Carriacou, Trinidadian Emma Saxon saw drone footage of the destruction on social media.

Saxon, who lives in Carriacou with her Grenadian husband Jeffrey Saxon and their Trinidadian-born daughter Emmalynn, recognised her home in the video. The roof had been blown away.

Saxon, who came to TT in February to have surgery, spent the next two days frantically trying to reach Jeffrey and Emmalynn, who is five.

When she was finally able to speak to them, she said while the connection was poor, she was relieved they were safe.

Speaking to Newsday on Thursday via telephone, Saxon said, “I was very traumatised seeing the drone footage.

“When I saw our house, the roof was completely gone. I was really afraid and worried as my daughter is only five.”

Saxon and her family have resided in Jean Pierre, Carriacou for the last five years.

She said in February, she returned to TT for three surgeries on her kidney.

Since then, she has not returned to Carriacou as she has had follow-up appointments in TT and another surgery carded for August.

When asked how eager she is to see her daughter, she said, “I need to see her immediately. I need her to come home!”

Saxon said Carriacou was completely flattened and she was unsure whether her husband and daughter had gotten any help as they have not had a full conversation due to the poor connection.

On July 3, a press release said, “The Office of Disaster Preparedness and Management (ODPM) and the TT Defence Force (TTDF) of the Ministry of National Security are supporting the Ministry of Trade and Industry to provide humanitarian assistance and disaster relief to St Vincent and the Grenadines, Grenada and Carriacou and Petit Martinique.

“Two vessels were loaded with supplies and left that morning for Grenada.”

Heart of the Village Foundation, a charitable organisation in TT, also sent supplies to Carriacou, Union Island and Petit Martinique via Christopher Ragbir and his boat Captain David.

The boat left on the evening of July 3 and Marisha Narinesingh, founder of the organisation, said on July 4, the supplies cleared Grenada’s customs and were en route to Carriacou.

A situation report published on July 3 by the International Organisation for Migration (IOM) said Carriacou, Petit Martinique and parts of Grenada saw most buildings, schools and petrol stations either damaged or destroyed.

“Hurricane Beryl caused extreme damage to Carriacou and Petit Martinique with 70 and 97 per cent of building damaged respectively.”

The report said on July 2, evacuation centres in Grenada had 400 people and peaked at 3,000 during the storm.

In St Vincent and the Grenadines, Union Islands, Canouan and Mayreau received the full brunt of Beryl’s impact, with the island being left without food, water, electricity, communication and destroyed infrastructure.

“Approximately 1,750 people are currently housed in 71 public evacuation centres across the islands.

“It is estimated that 90 per cent of housing stock is damaged in the most affected islands, with 100 per cent of the people in need.”

In Jamaica, reports say two people have died during the passage of Beryl between July 3 and 4.

Power reportedly dropped, affecting about 400,000 customers, while floods, fallen trees, and debris caused significant damage, particularly in the south of Jamaica.

St Vincent and the Grenadines, Granada, Venezuela, and Jamaica have all reported deaths after the passage of Hurricane Beryl, taking the total number of deaths in the region attributed to the hurricane to 11.

Saxon said her husband is currently trying to locate his passport as she has gotten help from Crime Watch host Ian Alleyne in bringing her family home.

A release from the Ministry of Foreign and Caricom Affairs on July 4 said people seeking to make reports on TT nationals who are missing or stranded in countries affected by Hurricane Beryl may contact the Ministry of Foreign and Caricom Affairs via email at [email protected] or telephone at 1-868-499-4919. Nationals in Grenada can call the honorary Consul for TT Clifton Ali at 1-473-535-1822 or email [email protected]. Those in Jamaica can call the TT High Commission in Kingston at 1-876-926-5730, 1-876-926-5739, 1-876-968-0588 or email [email protected].