For those of you who have been watching the news, talking to friends, and reading this blog, by now you know about the terrible situation in Eagle. Conditions on the Yukon are still treacherous as the river has so much ice piling up that has yet to break loose.
Local resident and a retired colleague from Alaska Gateway, John Rusyniak, has sent out this email to some Tok residents. I'm copying his email here in its entirety so that people know what is happening in terms of local efforts to give aide and relief, as well as some FEMA efforts, which are apparently beginning.
Here is John's email message:
I've been in touch with a number of people in Eagle. I've learned some things and will be moving forward to help.
What I've Learned:
- A large number of people are homeless
- The Community reeks of diesel oil from dislodged fuel tanks
- Many private wells are contaminated
- The City well is still ok
- People had to leave their homes - many with just the shirts on their backs
- This has effected not only the Old Village, but it's up to the as well
- They will need help - but not so much yet
- Paul Kelly is heading to Eagle this AM with a load of supplies
- Francine Lee is arranging another load to leave at 4pm today
- FEMA has been contacted and Jack Turk is taking a load up for them
Eagle Village is located about 3-4 miles from the NPS field headquarters in Eagle. Floodwaters have damaged or destroyed many buildings in the village. Additionally, within Eagle at least two employee homes have had water damage and one of them had water up to the second story of their home. An estimated 10 homes in Eagle had been damaged or destroyed, and an estimated 30 of the area's 125 residents were homeless Tuesday morning.
Actions I'm taking:
- As soon as the bank opens I"m going to see if an account has been set up there for donations
- If not I'll get one set up and send out details later or just check with the bank
- I've offered to be a point of contact to organize work crews when they are needed and can do something
If you have any additional information or questions please contact me.
John A. Rusyniak
PO Box 122
Tok, Alaska 99780