Dear NACAC Family,
A short note from my IPhone which is getting a signal now from just one hot spot in San Juan.
I would like to express on behalf of the entire Area/Region our most sincere words of sadness for the catastrophic episodes that some our our brothers and sisters from our Area have faced in the last six weeks. First was Harvey that devastated Texas, especially Houston with the worse flooding in history.
Then the Leeward Islands , Puerto Rico, Cuba and Florida were hit by Irma that destroyed the islands east of Puerto Rico and part of Puerto Rico and Cuba.
Then the stronger ever hurricane that hit the Atlantic, María destroyed Dominica and Puerto Rico.
We were not able to get any communication at all until yesterday since the telecommunications systems are down and yesterday late afternoon I got the ATT signal in one hot spot.
Michael Serralta worked his way to the Ministry of Sports building where the NACAC office is located and everything is fine there although the building suffered some damages outside and as everybody else in the whole island there is no electricity and water.
I would like to thank everyone that sent us either messages and emails wishing us the best in facing what was coming to hit us. The USA rated Maria the number four worse ever disaster in USA history behind The Twin Towers, Katrina and Sandy. Honestly, the destruction to our beautiful paradise as in Tórtola, Barbuda, the USVI, St. Martin, Cuba , Dominica and now Puerto Rico was one of the greatest magnitude.
From a personal standpoint both Evelyn and I are fine and our home up in the mountains suffered some material damages but the devastation of the vegetation is unbelievable.
I was able to communicate with President Coe through Helen Delany and we already started a Solidarity IAAF Relief Task Force with other organizations to make sure that we provide aid to our members that were affected by the hurricanes in the Caribbean and the earthquakes in Mexico for facilities and development.
Once again, thank you to all for the messages and as we have demonstrated in the Athletic field that we are strong and tough against adversity and competition we will overcome this tragedy and will be stronger than ever as a Continent and as an Area/Region.
Please, stay in touch and we will keep coordinating The IAAF efforts of relief aid with President Coe and will keep you informed about it.
I have a Meeting with the President of PASO next week in Miami and will bring the situation personally to him. I am sure our brothers and sisters members of the PASO Executive are doing their part, also.
I am deeply in a stage of sorrow and sadness for the lost of Coach Dag Samuels from BVI whom we should keep in our prayers and must remember him forever.