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Earthquake in Guatemala


First thing for family and friends Cindy and I are OK.  We heard the earthquake was reported on Fox  so I called my mother to make sure she knew we were OK.  Yes I had checked to make sure Cindy was all right first.

Cindy had stayed home.  She heard all the dogs in the neighborhood start to bark and the door rattling – we hold it open with a block of wood.  Then the floor started to move.  She stayed put as it was hard to walk.  I was working on the forklift, very old, very heavy, very cantankerous piece of equipment that the men in our warehouse complex call affectionately the “Little Old Lady”.  In my concentration I thought the first noises (the roof shifting) was just the wind.  When the floor started to thump on the bottom of your feet, you know it ain’t the wind.  I jumped into the seat under the cage of that forklift and sat there.  Not a lot you can do to change what is going to happen next.  I remember a friend’s words about watching her concrete block wall ‘wave back and forth like water’ in the wind of Hurricane Andrew.  There I sat for several seconds, totally helpless.  And then in quit.  I went out into the driveway where everyone had congregated from the eight warehouses.  The guys next door joined me in an air band rendition of Jerry Lee Lewis’ “A Whole Lot o’ Shakin’ Goin’ On”  Everyone was laughing with relief.

When we saw where the epicenter was and I started calling our friends that were close.  So far as we know those we serve are all OK.  The death toll is well over 50 and will probably end up in the 70’s before this is over.  Families are tight and live close here.  Fathers and sons work at the same sites…. which increases the tragedy.  A sand mine collapses and men just disappear as the wall caves in.  The center city in San Marcos in the highlands collapses and whole families die, four in that hose, ten in that one.  Funerals happen quick in cultures where embalming does not exist.  Timing was fortunate for some in that they were working outside or away from their homes.  Still there is a lot of grief.  We are exploring how we at Vine International can help.  But these folks in the mountains are an independent lot used to a government that is not good at helping so they help themselves and their neighbors quickly.  The bomberos (volunteer firemen) here are superb, doing heroic work with so little.

We are not that close to this region so I do not have photos… here is a link to photos taken in the San Marcos and San Pedro areas close to the frontier with Mexico… A word of caution, reporters and photographers here are a little more graphic than our news service in the USA.

Cindy and I deeply appreciate your prayers for us, for the country we are called to work in and so many of our friends.  Thank you, In Christ, Dennis and Cindy McCutcheon

2 Comments leave one →
  1. Will & Denise permalink
    13/11/2012 00:16

    We are thanking God you guys are ok. We heard news of the quake and immediately thought of you guys. Do you haved any word from the Rhea’s?


  2. 13/11/2012 21:57

    Thanks Will and Denise. Yes we have talked with the Rhea’s and they are fine.


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