Rochester residents worry about family, friends in path of Ian

Published: Sep. 29, 2022 at 2:51 PM CDT
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ROCHESTER, Minn. (KTTC) – Hurricane Ian continued to pummel Florida’s shores Wednesday, leaving many in the Med City very concerned.

“I just hope and pray for all of my family and relatives there,” said Rochester Resident Rachel Agyei.

“It’s just pretty scary to go through that in general, and we’re here in Minnesota, and there’s nothing really for us to do except pray,” said Rochester resident Chelsea Mckoy.

“It is crazy to realize that this is actually happening to people’s homes,” said Rochester resident Hailee Bourdeaux.

With more footage rolling in of the high winds and storm surges ravaging Florida communities, these fears are quickly becoming a reality. Melanie Tschida says the American Red Cross branch for Minnesota and the Dakotas has more than 30 volunteers on standby, and some have already been deployed to Florida

“We want to make sure they have a safe place to stay, that they have clothing, that they have food, that their basic needs are met,” Tschida said, the executive director of the American Red Cross in Southeast Minnesota. “It’s an ongoing activity on our part.”

The organization has already setup many shelters throughout Florida. People who arrive at the shelters will be getting Red Cross blankets staying on cots, along with receiving other supplies. Depending on how bad the damage ends up being, some evacuees may need to unfortunately get comfortable with these arrangements.

“Those shelters will transition into longer term shelters for individuals whose homes are damaged, and they can’t return to their homes,” Tschida said.