Local Ohio woman fears for family in Puerto Rico

Posted at 6:27 PM, Sep 26, 2017

A Brunswick woman with family in Puerto Rico is now pleading for the U.S. government to act quickly.

Puerto Rico's governor is also asking for more federal help, calling Hurricane Maria's destruction a "humanitarian disaster.”

The deadly storm left structures demolished, streets flooded, and hospitals overwhelmed.

The island's communications systems are crippled, with millions expected to be without power for months.

Nereida Cunningham of Brunswick said she has a 90-year-old mother on the island who needs medical help. Her mother is in constant need of medical attention and needs insulin. A text from her sister on Tuesday says she has also gotten sick and is worried about the painful welts growing on her face.

She said she wants to bring her mother and the rest of her family to Ohio, but Puerto Rico's main airport has been severely affected by Hurricane Maria. Hundreds are reportedly stranded, unable to depart because of the lack of electricity.

“I'm to the point that I’m about to take my retirement money out and find somebody with a plane that can bring them here," Cunningham said.

On Tuesday, President Trump said his administration is doing everything it can to help. The White House has rejected criticism that the response has been too slow.

However, Cunningham said her family has yet to receive proper aid from anyone.

“The problem is there is food, there was water, there's supplies, there's gas, but they’re just not being transported,” she said.