One of the Caribbean islands devastated by Hurricane Irma is St. Maarten, where widespread destruction and several deaths have been reported. Rina Risper of Lansing is anxiously awaiting news on relatives on the island.
Risper is publisher of the New Citizens Press newspaper in Lansing. Her family on St. Maarten includes her grandmother, and she hasn’t been able to reach her. “I was up all night just thinking to myself how many more bodies will they find after they start the cleanup in the bush, up in the mountains? There are so many trees," Risper explains. "You don’t know what you’re going to find when the cleanup actually occurs, so that’s a little frightening.”
Drinking water and electrical systems on St. Maarten are down, and the Princess Juliana Airport has been described as destroyed.
Other islands and parts of Florida are feared to be in Hurricane Irma’s path.