Wednesday, December 29, 2004

Arizonians Caught in the Tsunami- Reports from around the state.

Mohave Valley News: News Column: "KINGMAN -- Whether a Mohave County employee and his family were affected by Sunday's earthquake and tsunamis remains a mystery. An earthquake measuring 9.0 on the Richter scale struck the region off the northwestern coast of Sumatra in Indonesia. As of Tuesday, tidal waves -- or tsunamis -- killed more than 52,000 people from 11 countries from Sri Lanka to Thailand where Kingman resident Greg Laporta and his wife were honeymooning. The Thai government reported Tuesday more than 1,500 people have been killed by the tsunamis in that country. Of that, more than 700 Western tourists have been killed at vacation destinations along Thailand�s western coast of the Indian Ocean. Laporta left Kingman Dec. 20 to travel to Thailand to marry a Thai woman, Bunnada Kongrach. The wedding date was reportedly Dec. 22. Joining him on the trip were his parents, Andrew and Joanne Laporta also of Kingman, according to Mike Matthews, director of the county's information technology department. Andrew Laporta reportedly is a science teacher at the Eagle Academy in Golden Valley. Phone calls to the school as well as to Laporta's residence went unanswered."
City woman among dead in Sri Lanka | The Arizona Daily Star �: "A Tucson woman, vacationing with her family in Sri Lanka, was among the tens of thousands of people killed Sunday by the massive, earthquake-triggered tsunamis. Her death and the growing natural disaster affecting their homeland and at least nine other Asian and East African countries have stunned the small Sri Lankan community in Tucson. Soma Madawela, a Sri Lankan who returned to her homeland with her husband and son last month for a trip around the country, drowned in the waves that crashed into the country's eastern coast, friends in Tucson said. The news of her death traveled quickly through the 25 families that make up Tucson's Sri Lankan community. The U.S. State Department released a statement that 12 U.S. citizens had died in the disaster and hundreds more were missing Tuesday night."
Prescott Newspapers Online"A Prescott woman who traveled to Thailand before an earthquake and tsunami ravaged the region this week is unharmed, her son said Tuesday. Matt Condie, a freshman at Yavapai College, said his mother, Marlys Tanner, called him at around midnight Monday to say that she was OK, and spoke to him for about an hour. Condie added that his mother said she was staying in a house with a family friend on the island of Phuket a few miles inland when the tidal wave struck on Sunday. “She said all the tourists there left,” Condie said. “She is working on one of her books and she is basically just hanging out.” Condie, who works in a Prescott motel, said that Tanner, who is retired, was planning to travel to Malaysia Tuesday to extend her visa and return to Thailand later that day. He added that the natural disaster, which has claimed more than 52,000 lives, will not alter her plans to stay in Thailand until her return flight Feb. 18."

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