Local American Red Cross volunteer back from weeks in Virgin Islands after hurricanes

Posted at 3:55 PM, Oct 05, 2017
and last updated 2017-10-05 18:50:57-04

"It's been four weeks since I deployed to St. Thomas," said American Red Cross Palm Beach and Martin County Disaster Program Manager Robbie Sofaly.

Sofaly just got back home after riding out Hurricane Irma and then ended up staying for Hurricane Maria. 

 "In something like that, everything that could go wrong does go wrong," he said. "Throwing coconuts 150 miles per hour up against shutters... the largest cracks you've ever heard." 

His pictures show the clear devastation and the response in the Virgin Islands. 

"Going through the storm, we had to exude a level of calm because the folks were looking to us for that whether or not we were nervous or anxious on the inside," he said. "After a category five on a small island, you are working hour by hour day by day because everybody is impacted." 

Back at the Riviera Beach warehouse, they've restocked the shelves with supplies, but Sofaly said resources are still spread thin, between the storms and the response needed in Las Vegas.  He doesn't want people to move on too quickly because help is still needed. 

"It's easy to forget about the people in the Virgin Islands because it's a small island territory next to a bigger island territory like Puerto Rico," said Sofaly. 

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