Haitian Americans Face Agonizing Wait For News On Their Families

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From the Washington Post:

For years, Elsie Delson has worried about the 10-year-old son she left behind in Haiti — the son she couldn’t afford to bring along as her family fled to the United States. Now, that decision weighs heavily on her soul.

In the wake of Tuesday’s devastating earthquake in Haiti, Delson has frantically tried to call her parents, who care for her son in Port-au-Prince. Like many of the estimated 20,000 Haitian immigrants in the Washington area, she stayed up the night after the earthquake crying, praying and crying some more.

“I ask God what has happened, but I do not know. Nobody knows what happened, who is alive and who is not,” she whispered in French at a prayer meeting Wednesday in Silver Spring. As she spoke, women around her cried out with loud Creole hymns and fervent prayers: “Protect them, God! O God who saves us. Protect them all!”

Across the Washington region and the country, from small enclaves of Haitians in Alexandria and Adelphi to huge communities in Miami and New York, similar stories of distress and uncertainty played out in churches, living rooms and offices.

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