Northeast Ohio family loses everything in U.S. Virgin Islands af - Cleveland 19 News Cleveland, OH

Northeast Ohio family loses everything in U.S. Virgin Islands after Irma

This is all that remains of Morningstar Charters, a boating business owned by a native Ohio family. (Source: WOIO) This is all that remains of Morningstar Charters, a boating business owned by a native Ohio family. (Source: WOIO)

A former Ohio family now living in the U.S. Virgin Islands has lost everything to Hurricane Irma.

Michael and Bridget Rose are now back in Northeast Ohio, but they worry about what they'll find when they return to the Caribbean.

Their main concern is for the people in the place they call home.

"We have it good. I mean, we don't have anything but we have it good. There are people that have less than us. We have stories of friends that left island that moved so quickly to get on boats whenever they could that they didn't even go home to get their belongings or wallets," said Michael.

The Rose family left the Caribbean earlier this summer to prepare for the birth of their son and planned to return to the islands this week. But the devastation from Irma changed the course of their plans.

They've been running their company Morningstar Sailing & Power Charters for years and says the 40-foot boat is their livelihood.

"There's been pictures. lots of pictures of an old wooden sailboat lying on it's side right in front of Cruz Bay Ferry and that's our boat and it's like a haunting reminder," he said.

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They say their family, friends and customers  have stepped up  to help and while they have plans to rebuild their business, their focus is on the greater  community in the islands.

"They're U.S. citizens. They're people that had their businesses and their homes and they're literally people like us. We want to make sure that our family on island there and our neighbors are being thought of," said Bridget Rose.

They've been doing news interviews and blasting social media to get the word out for their brothers and sisters on island.

"We know that there are people out there that need more help than we do and so we're trying our best but everything is on hold right now, everything, we don't know what we're going to do," said Michael.

The Rose family is helping the people of St. John through Virgin Islands Relief c/o of Atlantic Aviation. Click here to contribute. 

Donations can be delivered in person, or shipped to:

Virgin Islands Relief
c/o Atlantic Aviation
9800 Ashton Rd
Philadelphia PA 19114

Here are a list of items that people need:

  • Nonperishable foods for adults and babies.
  • Toiletries
  • Baby wipes
  • Diapers
  • Pre-charged cellphone chargers
  • Clothing
  • Meals ready to eat (MRE’s)
  • Small Generators
  • 2-stroke oil
  • Chainsaws
  • Water
  • Mosquito repellent
  • Clothing
  • Blankets
  • Over the counter medications
  • Lanterns
  • Flashlights
  • First aid supplies
  • Coolers
  • Batteries
  • Safety equipment such as goggles, gloves and harnesses
  • Specialized straws which make contaminated water safe to drink

And if you'd like to help the Rose family rebuild their business, click here to find out how you can help.

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