Local Mom Searches for Kids in Puerto Rico After Devastating Hurricane Maria

LUBBOCK, TX - Hurricane Maria devastated Puerto Rico, leaving the island completely without power. Jessica Astorga lives in Lubbock but has two kids who live in Puerto Rico with their grandmother. She hasn't heard from them in two weeks since right before Hurricane Irma hit. 

"She messaged me on Facebook and said 'Mom, I'm really scared. It's already a Category 5 and we live right by the ocean, but I love you,'"said Astorga. "I said, 'I love you too' and that was the last thing I heard from her."

She usually can call or message her kids but without electricity or working WiFi, she hasn't been able to. 

"I wake up everyday with the feeling of heartbreak and I got to bed every night with the feeling of heartbreak," she said. 

For the last two weeks, she's spent hours everyday trying to contact her family or anyone who can give them an update. 

"I've wrote her like 23 messages on Facebook and posted on her page if anybody's seen her or heard from her or any other family members, that I'm her mom and please reach out to me," she said.  "I need to understand that my children are safe and okay and so far, nothing."

She's now trying to stay strong for her two youngest kids who live with her in Lubbock. 

"It's one of those situations where I can just walk away and cry for a minute, and hope she doesn't hear me crying because she gets upset and just wipe my eyes and put a brave face on and continue my day." she said talking about her youngest daughter. "It's probably the scariest thing I've ever been involved in in my life."

But Astorga is determined not to give up. 

"I will find out they're okay, and I wont stop until I do," she said. "I'm just going to keep calling who I have to call and my phone is pretty much planted in my hand all day."

Hurricane Maria is the strongest storm to hit Puerto Rico in 80 years. Officials have said that recovery efforts could take months including getting the power back on. 


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