The family thought their worries were over once their daughter Harriet returned to Panama City after escaping from Hurricane Irma.
Little did they know that their daughter was heading back into another devastating storm.
“We did start to panic, you know, thinking we had just flown out daughter into a hurricane. We had no idea it was going to turn that way,” Louise Windgrove, Harriet’s mother, said.
Harriet called her family the night before the category five hurricane made landfall.
“She put her mattress up against the window, made sure she got water, batteries, you know, everything you needed,” she said.
She was alone in the storm.
“She could hear things outside. Things were banging, the wind was howling, she kept panicking thinking things were coming through. There was water.”
As Maria hit the island, the family lost contact.
“She sent a last text saying ‘Maria’s made landfall. It’s gonna get nasty,’ and that’s the last we heard from her.”
Two days passed, and the family struggled to find answers.
“There was nothing saying, this had been hit, this is okay, there was nothing,” she said.
Louise says she resorted to social media to find news about her daughter. She eventually saw a Facebook post saying the students in her medical school were safe. A few hours later, she received a call from the school confirming the students were okay and headed to St. Lucia soon.
“I have a few weepy moments but I’m okay. I know she’s okay. She’s tough. So i know she’s organizing people and telling them what to do. That’s Harriet.”
The family says Harriet is supposed to evacuate to St. Lucia this weekend.
They hope to hear from her there.